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Thursday, 17 October, 2002, 14:27 GMT 15:27 UK
Alistair Darling
Alistair Darling

Date of birth

28 November 1953

Political profile

Alistair Darling is seen as one of Tony Blair's most trusted cabinet colleagues.

A measure of the trust placed in him is the fact that he was handed the highly-sensitive role of transport secretary, following the resignation of the under-fire Stephen Byers.

In the June 2003 reshuffle he was given the added task of speaking on Scottish affairs in the Commons and taking charge of the Scotland Office's civil servants when they became part of the new Department of Constitutional Affairs.

Mr Darling came to transport from the similarly contentious but lower profile work and pensions brief, where he was responsible for delivering Labour's key policy commitments on reforming the social security system.

A committed moderniser, Mr Darling is close politically to both the prime minister and to Gordon Brown, whom he served as Chief Secretary to the Treasury.

He was first elected in 1987, after a career as an advocate and a short stint as a Lothian councillor, and was soon promoted to the front bench.

Contact

Commons Office: 020 7219 4584

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