Joe Hendron

Joseph Gerard Hendron (born 12 November 1932) is a Northern Ireland politician, a member of the moderate Irish nationalist Social Democratic and Labour Party (SDLP).

Joe Hendron
Member of the Legislative Assembly
for Belfast West
In office
25 June 1998  26 November 2003
Preceded byOffice Created
Succeeded byDiane Dodds
Member of Parliament
for Belfast West
In office
9 April 1992  1 May 1997
Preceded byGerry Adams
Succeeded byGerry Adams
Personal details
Born (1932-11-12) 12 November 1932 (age 87)
Political partySDLP

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. He was later elected to Belfast City Council in 1981 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 became the only nationalist MP to defeat Adams. The seat had previously been held for the SDLP by Gerry Fitt (later Lord Fitt) until 1983. Hendron attracted unprecedented cross-community support from Nationalists and Unionists in the constituency. This was the only example where an SDLP candidate received a high amount of Unionist votes in Belfast West that un-seated a Sinn Fein candidate.

Adams regained the seat at the next election in May 1997.

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.

He was appointed a member of the Northern Ireland Parades Commission in 2005[1] Dr Hendron retired in December 2010 from this body.[2]


  1. Appointments made to parades body, BBC News, 30 November 2005, accessed 12 February 2012
  2. New Parades Commission for Northern Ireland appointed, BBC News, 20 December 2010, accessed 12 February 2012


Northern Ireland Constitutional Convention
New convention Member for West Belfast
Convention dissolved
Northern Ireland Assembly (1982)
New assembly MPA for West Belfast
Assembly abolished
Parliament of the United Kingdom
Preceded by
Gerry Adams
Member of Parliament for Belfast West
Succeeded by
Gerry Adams
Northern Ireland Forum
New forum Member for West Belfast
Forum dissolved
Northern Ireland Assembly
New assembly MLA for Belfast West
Succeeded by
Diane Dodds