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Theresa May


Theresa May to replace Cameron as UK prime minister on Wednesday

Theresa May will take over from David Cameron on Wednesday and become the UK’s first female prime minister since Margaret Thatcher. Britain’s home secretary (interior minister) was left as the only candidate to be the new leader of the ruling Conservative Party after “her rival Andrea Leadsom pulled out of the race”:… and Cameron then said he would quit much earlier than planned.

Theresa May: Meet the woman who will be Britain’s new Prime Minister


Who is Theresa May?

Theresa Mary May is the Member of Parliament for Maidenhead.

Born on Oct 1, 1956, in Eastbourne, Sussex, she was educated at Holton Park Girls’ Grammar School in Oxfordshire and St Hugh’s College Oxford (Geography).

She entered Parliament in 1997 and is currently the longest-serving Home Secretary in 50 years.

Will she be Prime Minister?

Mrs May, 59, will almost certainly be declared Prime Minister now that Andrea Leadsom, the energy minister, has quit the two-horse race to succeed David Cameron as leader of the Conservative Party.

It came after the furore around Mrs Leadsom’s comments which appeared to suggest that being a mother made her a better candidate for the job than Mrs May.

The chairman of the Conservative backbench 1922 Committee will have to decide whether, as the only candidate remaining on the ballot paper, she can become leader without facing a vote of the party’s 150,000 members.

If her appointment is confirmed, Mrs May will become Britain’s second female prime minister after Margaret Thatcher.


Theresa May attends church with her husband Philip near her Maidenhead Constituency. Credit: David Hartley /Ruert Hartley 

Who is Theresa May’s husband?

She is married to banker Philip May and has no children. The pair, who have a shared love of cricket, met at a Conservative Association dance party and have been married for 36 years. They live in Sonning, Berkshire.

Mrs May is truly the quiet woman of British politics. The Home Secretary played a clever hand during the EU referendum by staying out of the fray and letting events play out around her.

Her restrained approach has helped her avoid alienating Tory Brexiteers and the polls suggest her reputation has held up better than some of her leadership rivals.

In an interview with the BBC she gave a taste of which direction the Party could go under her leadership when she made a clear call for “further reform” to EU free movement rules.


Philip May (left) behind Richard Nixon, speaking at the Oxford Union Credit: Geoff Pugh 

Before Politics

The only child of Reverend Hubert Brasier, an Anglican vicar and his wife, Zaidee, Mrs May grew up in Oxfordshire. She was educated at both grammar and comprehensive schools before gaining a place at Oxford University.

She started her career at the Bank of England and then moved to the Association for Payment Clearing Services (APACS) before becoming an MP.

She began her political career stuffing envelopes at her local Conservative Association before becoming a councillor in the London Borough of Merton from 1986 to 1994.

Key Quote

“We know that for people in low-paid jobs, wages are forced down even further (as a result of immigration) while some people are forced out of work altogether”

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