Gordon Marsden

Gordon Marsden (born 28 November 1953) is a British Labour Party politician who was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Blackpool South from 1997 to 2019.

Gordon Marsden
Member of Parliament
for Blackpool South
In office
2 May 1997  6 November 2019
Preceded byNick Hawkins
Succeeded byScott Benton
Personal details
Born (1953-11-28) 28 November 1953
Manchester, Lancashire, England
Political partyLabour
Alma materNew College, Oxford
Warburg Institute
Harvard University

Early life

Marsden was educated at Stockport Grammar School, an independent school in Stockport, Cheshire, followed by New College, Oxford where he attained a first-class degree in Modern History. He then went on to postgraduate studies at the Warburg Institute (part of the University of London) and Harvard University's Kennedy School of Government, being a Kennedy Scholar in Politics and International Relations.

Before entering Parliament he had been a tutor for the Open University since 1994, as well as a public affairs adviser to English Heritage and, for twelve years, the editor of History Today and New Socialist magazine.

Parliamentary career

Marsden first contested the seat of Blackpool South in 1992 and won it in 1997. Once elected to Parliament, Gordon served as Parliamentary Private Secretary to Lord Irvine of Lairg in the Lord Chancellor's Department (2001–03), Tessa Jowell as Secretary of State for Culture, Media and Sport (2003–05) and John Denham as Secretary of State for Communities and Local Government and shadow communities secretary (2009–).

In 2003, he was made a Visiting Parliamentary Fellow of St Antony's College, Oxford.

Gordon is Shadow Minister for Higher Education, Further Education and Skills and previously served as a member of the House of Commons Innovation, Universities, Science and Skills Committee and Education and Skills Select Committee before it was dissolved in 2007.

He is Chair of the Associate Parliamentary Skills Group and of the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Veterans.

Gordon Marsden was one of 36 Labour MPs to nominate Jeremy Corbyn as a candidate in the Labour leadership election of 2015.[1]

Fabian Society

Marsden is a member of the Fabian Society, of which he was chairman in 2000-1. He also served as Chair of the Young Fabians and now serves as a Trustee of Dartmouth Street, the building where the Society is based.

Seaside towns

Marsden convened the first group of Labour MPs representing seaside and coastal towns. In 2007 Gordon was asked to chair a Manifesto Group for the Prime Minister Gordon Brown on Seaside and Coastal Towns.

Personal life

In early 2009, Gordon was named as one of the Daily Telegraph's expenses "saints", due to the low levels of his expenses claims.[2]


  1. "Who nominated who for the 2015 Labour leadership election?". www.newstatesman.com. Retrieved 10 June 2017.
  2. "Blackpool MP named an expenses 'saint'". www.blackpoolgazette.co.uk. Retrieved 10 June 2017.

Video clips

Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Nick Hawkins
Member of Parliament for Blackpool South
Succeeded by
Scott Benton
Party political offices
Preceded by
Calum MacDonald
Chair of the Fabian Society
Succeeded by
Denis MacShane
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