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Nancy Astor becomes the first female MP to take her seat in the House of Commons

When American-born English socialite Nancy Astor entered the House of Commons on 1 December 1919, she became the first female MP in British history to take a seat in parliament.

She was elected to Parliament for Plymouth Sutton in November 1919, replacing her husband who had previously been the MP. Astor was elected following a by-election on 15 November 1919, although she had to wait until 28 November for the results to be announced, where it turned out she received more votes than the Labour and Liberal candidates combined. She entered the House of Commons on 1 December 1919 to take her oath, sponsored by Prime Minister David Lloyd George and Lord President of the Council and former Prime Minister Arthur Balfour.

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Quote of the week

“Trains are not just a hobby for my husband; you could call them a professional life interest.”

Pauline Pegler, wife of railway preservationist Alan Pegler, who bought and restored the Flying Scotsman in 1962

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