The Lord MacGregor of Pulham Market
|Prime Minister||Margaret Thatcher|
|Member of Parliament |
for South Norfolk
28 February 1974 – 14 May 2001
|Preceded by||John Hill|
|Succeeded by||Richard Bacon|
|Born||14 February 1937|
London, United Kingdom
|Alma mater||University of St Andrews|
King's College London
John Roddick Russell MacGregor, Baron MacGregor of Pulham Market,(born 14 February 1937), is a politician from the United Kingdom. A member of the Conservative Party, he was the Member of Parliament (MP) for South Norfolk from 1974 to 2001. He served in the Cabinet as Chief Secretary to the Treasury (1985–87), Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food (1987–89), Secretary of State for Education and Science (1989–90), Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council (1990–92), and Secretary of State for Transport (1992–94). He was made a life peer in 2001.
MacGregor was educated at Merchiston Castle School in Edinburgh, then at the University of St Andrews (MA economics and history, 1959) and at King's College London (LLB, 1962). Prior to the 1979 general election he worked for Hill Samuel, a merchant bank.
He became an MP at the February 1974 General Election, and served as a Tory whip from 1977 to 1981, when he became a junior minister at the Department of Trade and Industry, moving to MAFF in 1983.
MacGregor entered the Cabinet on 2 September 1985 as Chief Secretary to the Treasury, and was made Minister of Agriculture, Fisheries and Food in 1987 – during the BSE crisis. He was promoted to Secretary of State for Education and Science in July 1989. In the small reshuffle following the resignation of Sir Geoffrey Howe, he was made Leader of the House of Commons and Lord President of the Council just days before Thatcher's own resignation. He continued in this position from 1990 to 1992, although William Keegan writes that he was a contender for the position of Chancellor when John Major came to power.
MacGregor was appointed Secretary of State for Transport in 1992, remaining in the post until July 1994 when was dismissed from the cabinet. His time as Transport Secretary saw him given responsibility for the privatisation of British Rail and the decision to privatise the Transport Research Laboratory (TRL). He was made a life peer as Baron MacGregor of Pulham Market, of Pulham Market in the County of Norfolk on 5 July 2001. He sat in the House of Lords until his retirement on 26 July 2019.
MacGregor was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 1971 New Year Honours for political services.
MacGregor is an accomplished magician and member of the Magic Circle. He gave regular performances on British television, including guest spots on The Best of Magic and an annual children's charity programme on Anglia Television.