Alumni Association Annual Lecture: 'Reflections on life as a senior civil servant'

27 April 2017, 6.30 PM - 27 April 2017, 9.30 PM

Margaret Aldred CB CBE (BSc Geography 1975)

School of Chemistry, Cantock’s Close, Bristol, BS8 1TS

What is life like for a senior civil servant today? Margaret Aldred CB CBE (BSc Geography 1975) reflects on her experiences with particular reference to working as a woman in a senior position in the Ministry of Defence (MOD) and as secretary of the Iraq War Inquiry. 

The public inquiry into Britain's role in the Iraq War was set up in 2009, concluding in 2016 that the UK chose to join the invasion of Iraq before the peaceful options for disarmament had been exhausted. At this exclusive lecture, Margaret will talk to University of Bristol alumni and friends about the role of the Secretariat, the choices of the inquiry about its conduct and conclusions, and the purpose of such a politically controversial inquiry.

The lecture will be followed by a Q&A session led by Professor Guy Orpen, Deputy Vice-Chancellor and a reception with drinks and a light buffet at the School of Chemistry.

About Margaret

In her long career in the Civil Service, Margaret worked in senior roles in four departments of state. She held a number of posts in the MOD, including the first female Principal Private Secretary to the Defence Secretary, before becoming a Director in the Public Services Directorate, HM Treasury, in 2001. After three years as Director General Resources and Performance, Home Office, Margaret was appointed Deputy Head of the Defence and Overseas (later Foreign and Defence Policy) Secretariat in the Cabinet Office from November 2004 to August 2009.

Margaret was appointed CBE in the Gulf Honours 1991 and CB in the New Year Honours 2009.

Cost Free, but advance booking essential. Please RSVP by Friday 21 April 2017.

Dress code Business/smart casual.

Booking information Register today for your free ticket to guarantee your place at the lecture.

Further information For more information, please contact Charles Gunter at