Terry Davis (politician)

For other people named Terry Davis, see Terry Davis (disambiguation).
The Right Honourable
Terry Davis
Secretary General of the
Council of Europe
In office
1 September 2004  1 October 2009
Preceded by Walter Schwimmer
Succeeded by Thorbjørn Jagland
Member of Parliament
for Birmingham Hodge Hill
Birmingham Stechford (1979–1983)
In office
3 May 1979  22 June 2004
Preceded by Andrew MacKay
Succeeded by Liam Byrne
Member of Parliament
for Bromsgrove
In office
27 May 1971  28 February 1974
Preceded by James Dance
Succeeded by Constituency Abolished
Personal details
Born Terence Anthony Gordon Davis
(1938-01-05) 5 January 1938
Stourbridge, England, UK
Nationality British
Political party Labour
Alma mater University College London, University of Michigan

Terence Anthony Gordon Davis CMG (born 5 January 1938), known as Terry Davis, is a British Labour Party politician, and former Member of Parliament (MP) for the Birmingham Hodge Hill constituency, and former Secretary General of the Council of Europe. He is a member of the Privy Council.

Early life

He went to the King Edward VI Grammar School (now the King Edward VI College) in Stourbridge. Davis is a graduate of University College London,[1] where he gained an LLB degree in 1962, and University of Michigan's Ross School of Business, where he gained an MBA degree in 1962. He was a company executive from 1962–71 for Esso, Clarks shoes and Chrysler Parts. From 1974 to 1979, he was a manager in the motor industry, with Leyland Cars.

Parliamentary career

At the 1970 general election, Davis stood unsuccessfully in the Conservative-held Bromsgrove constituency. The sitting MP, James Dance, died the following year, and Davis won the resulting by-election.

The Bromsgrove constituency was abolished in boundary changes for the February 1974 general election, and in the new Bromsgrove and Redditch constituency, Davis lost to the Conservative Hal Miller. He stood again at the October 1974 general election and lost again.

In 1977, Birmingham Stechford Labour MP, Roy Jenkins, was appointed President of the European Commission, and Davis was selected as the Labour candidate in the by-election. He lost by 1,949 votes to the Conservative Andrew MacKay, but at the 1979 general election, he won the seat with a majority of 1,649.

The Stechford constituency was abolished in boundary changes for the 1983 general election, and Davis was re-elected in the successor constituency of Birmingham Hodge Hill. He held that seat until his retirement from the House of Commons 21 years later.

In 2004 he was elected Secretary General of the Council of Europe,[1] and announced his intention to stand down from the UK parliament by applying for the Stewardship of the Chiltern Hundreds. The resulting by-election was held on 15 July and won by Labour's Liam Byrne. He left the Council of Europe on 31 August 2009. He was appointed Companion of the Order of St Michael and St George (CMG) in the 2010 New Year Honours.[2]

Wikileaks "cablegate" revelations disclosed that the US, unhappy about his criticisms of the US's rendition program, regarded him as an "unpopular lame duck".[3]

Personal life

He married Anne Cooper in 1963. They have a son and daughter.[1]


  1. 1 2 3 "DAVIS, Rt Hon. Terence Anthony Gordon, (Terry)". Who Was Who (online ed.). Oxford University Press. 2007. Retrieved 16 February 2013. (subscription required)
  2. The London Gazette: (Supplement) no. 59282. p. 3. 31 December 2009.
  3. http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2010/dec/17/wikileaks-european-human-rights-standards
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
James Dance
Member of Parliament for Bromsgrove
1971Feb 1974
Constituency abolished
Preceded by
Andrew MacKay
Member of Parliament for Birmingham Stechford
Constituency abolished
New constituency Member of Parliament for Birmingham Hodge Hill
Succeeded by
Liam Byrne
Political offices
Preceded by
Walter Schwimmer
Secretary General of the Council of Europe
1 September 2004 – 31 August 2009
Succeeded by
Thorbjørn Jagland
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