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Friday, 6 September, 2002, 14:39 GMT 15:39 UK
Tributes after Baroness Young dies
Baroness Young
Baroness Young was a strong voice on family values
Conservative former Cabinet minister Baroness Young has died aged 75.


Janet Young epitomised the timeless value of staying true to one's personal beliefs

Iain Duncan Smith
Lady Young, the first woman to be leader of the House of Lords, died after a "long illness bravely borne", Conservative Central Office said.

Tory leader Iain Duncan Smith, a close friend of Lady Young, paid tribute to her.

He said the party would mourn her passing "with great sadness".

'Shocked and saddened'

Mr Duncan Smith said his first thoughts were with her family and close friends.


She devoted her whole life to public service, and public life is diminished by her loss

Baroness Thatcher
"We offer them our deepest sympathies at this difficult time," he said.

"I was personally very fond of Janet and while I had been aware for some time that she was ill, I was shocked by this news and immensely saddened."

The Tory leader praised Lady Young's "courage, conviction and tenacity".

'True to her beliefs'

He said she was a "principled campaigner" who "fought tirelessly" for what she believed in.

"In an age when style so often seems to come before substance, Janet Young epitomised the timeless value of staying true to one's personal beliefs.

Edward Heath
Mr Heath: 'Death is a great loss'
"Whatever the cause, Janet conducted herself with a degree of courtesy that was respected on all sides."

Baroness Thatcher said: "Janet Young was not only a good friend, but she was one of the most courageous and effective woman politicians of her generation.

"She devoted her whole life to public service, and public life is diminished by her loss."

Former Prime Minister Sir Edward Heath commented: "Baroness Young played a major part in both our educational and political systems over many years.

"Her influence has been widely felt throughout the country.

"Her death is a great loss to us all, both educationally and politically."

Family values

A former Oxford city councillor, Janet Young was given a seat in the House of Lords in 1971.

She served first in Edward Heath's government and later under Margaret Thatcher, in the foreign office and as an education minister.

The pinnacle of her career was being Leader of the House of Lords between 1981 and 1983.

In recent years, she was best known as a "family values" campaigner.

She was a leading figure in the Tory campaign against the abolition of section 28 and against lowering the homosexual age of consent.

Peer of the year

Her efforts on the latter campaign, which resulted in Section 28 remaining on the statute books, earned her the accolade of the Spectator's Parliamentarian of the Year.

She was also named Channel 4's Peer of the Year in 2001.

Lady Young, who died at her home in Oxford earlier on Friday, leaves a husband Geoffrey and three daughters.

The funeral will be held at St Andrew's Church, Oxford.

Her family have requested flowers should be sent by family members only.

 WATCH/LISTEN
 ON THIS STORY
The BBC's Reeta Chakrabarti
"She became a stout defender of family values"

Click here to go to Oxford
See also:

25 Jul 00 | Politics
03 Oct 00 | Conservatives
02 Feb 00 | Politics
26 Jan 01 | Health
06 Sep 02 | Politics
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