Leeds MPs

DEAN, Joseph (1922–1999) Labour. Engineer.

He worked for Beyer Peacock, the engineering company, on war work before volunteering for the Royal Navy in 1942. When Charles Pannell retired in 1974, Dean was chosen to stand for Leeds West which he comfortably won with a majority of 3,985. On his election he was immediately appointed as Parliamentary Private Secretary to the Minister of State, Civil Service Department, a post he held from 1974–1977. From 1978–1779 he was Assistant Government Whip. Housing had always been a subject of great interest to him and he was a long time chairman of Manchester’s Housing Committee. In his maiden speech in the Commons he focussed on housing issues, expressing delight that previously escalating rents had been frozen. He claimed that ‘My constituency has some nice parts but in the inner segment is an extremely deprived area. It is as bad an area as I have seen anywhere.’ He believed that it was impossible to build houses at the same time as over-building blocks of luxury offices and flats. He retained his seat in the October 1974 election and 1979 when Labour lost office. Defeated by Michael Meadowcroft of the Liberals in 1983, he was elevated to the Lords that year. For further reading see The Independent, 1 March 1999.