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Rosemary Butler

Rosemary Butler

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Detailed information: Rosemary Butler


Dame Rosemary Butler was a Member of the National Assembly for Wales between May 1999 and April 2016. This was her biography at the time she left.

Personal history

Dame Rosemary Butler has lived in Caerleon, part of the Newport West Constituency, for many years, and attended St Julian's High School. Her interests range from museums, art galleries, concerts and opera, to foreign travel and family history.

Professional background

Rosemary joined the Labour party in 1971 and two years later she was elected Labour councillor for Caerleon on Newport Borough Council, a position she held until 1999. While on the council, she chaired the Leisure Services Committee for 12 years, and served as Deputy Leader and Mayor of Newport (1989/1990).

Political history

She was elected as Newport West’s first Assembly Member in May 1999 and has been re-elected in each subsequent Assembly election.

Rosemary was appointed to the first National Assembly cabinet as Minister for pre-16 Education and Children, and chaired the Culture, Welsh Language and Sport Committee and was the Assembly’s representative on the European Union’s Committee of the Regions. She has also been Deputy Presiding Officer, Chair of the Assembly’s Legislation (1) Committee (which scrutinised all backbench proposals to introduce Measures) and served on the British Council Cross-Party group.

In May 2011, Rosemary was elected to the position of Presiding Officer of the National Assembly by a unanimous vote of Assembly Members. In addition, she represents the Assembly on the British Irish Parliamentary Association and CALRE (Speakers of Legislative Bodies in the European Union).


Rosemary is an honorary Fellow of the University of Wales, Newport, Co-founder and chair of the Newport International Competition for Young Pianists, a founding member of the Newport-Kutaisi Twinning Association, president of the Friends of Newport Transporter Bridge, president of the Wales Home Safety Council, president of Newport Harriers Athletic Club, honorary life member of Newport Sports Council, life member of Newport Cricket Club, a founder member of the Friends of Tredegar House, Ambassador for Girl Guiding, a founder member of Newport Women's Aid, Honorary Doctor of University of South Wales, Honorary Fellow of Cardiff Metropolitan University, Chair of the Independent Chartist Commission (Newport), member of Women's International League of Peace and Freedom and patron of Caerleon Arts Festival.

Video biography

Register of Interests

Register of Interests – Fourth Assembly (PDF, 850kb)

Register of Interests – Third Assembly (PDF, 490kb)

Register of Interests – Second Assembly (PDF, 361kb)

Register of Interests – First Assembly (PDF, 268kb)


Media Assets

Calendar events: Rosemary Butler