- Joe Hendron
Joe Hendron Member of the Northern Ireland Assembly
for Belfast West
25 June 1998 – 26 November 2003
Preceded by Office Created Succeeded by Diane Dodds Member of Parliament
for Belfast West
9 April 1992 – 1 May 1997
Preceded by Gerry Adams Succeeded by Gerry Adams Personal details Born 12 November 1932 Political party Social Democratic and Labour Party
He became the only nationalist MP to successfully defeat Sinn Féin's Gerry Adams in 1992, following in the tradition of former SDLP MP for the area, Gerry Fitt- later Lord Fitt.
Hendron, also a local GP physician for 40 years, was first elected as a political representative of Belfast West in 1975 to the Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention, in 1981 as an SDLP member of Belfast City Council for the area and in 1982 to the Northern Ireland Assembly.
Hendron was the Member of Parliament (MP) for Belfast West between April 1992 and May 1997 in the UK Parliament in London. He had taken the seat from Sinn Féin President Gerry Adams at his third attempt with a majority of 1%. He attracted unprecedented cross-community support from Nationalists and Loyalists in the constituency.
Adams regained the seat at the next election in May 1997 due to boundary changes favouring his Sinn Féin party, which brought the Poleglass and Twinbrook electoral areas into West Belfast parliamentary seat. Doctor Hendron, along with his SDLP predecessor (and former party leader) Gerry Fitt, remains one of the few politicians in Northern Ireland who proved capable of crossing the sectarian divide in terms of electoral support.
In 1996 Hendron was elected to the Northern Ireland Forum and in 1998 to the newly reconvened Northern Ireland Assembly. However he lost his seat in the 2003 Northern Ireland Assembly election to a member of Ian Paisley's Democratic Unionist Party.
Parliament of the United Kingdom Preceded by
Member of Parliament for Belfast West
Northern Ireland Assembly Preceded by
MLA for Belfast West
1998 - 2003
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