Distinguished friends

Shreela Flather

Baroness Flather is a life peer and cross-bench member of the House of Lords. She was the first minority woman to receive a life peerage in 1990 as Baroness Flather of Windsor and Maidenhead in the Royal County of Berkshire. She was the only Asian woman in the House when she arrived, and comment was made about her wearing a sari at the time. Previously she had been the first Asian woman mayor in the UK when she held this office in the Royal Borough of Windsor and Maidenhead; and when elected councillor to the same borough in 1976, she became the first minority woman to be elected as a councillor in this country.

Baroness Flather has a law degree from University College London where she has been made a Fellow, and was called to the Bar from the Inner Temple. She also has three honorary doctorates from Open University, Leeds University and Northampton University. She is responsible for building the Memorial on Constitution Hill to the Indians, Africans and West Indians who fought with the British in two world wars. In 2010 she published a book about changing extreme poverty by bringing women into paid work in India and Africa: Woman – Acceptable Exploitation for Profit. During her long career she has served on numerous public bodies, mainly in the field of race relations. She is currently a board member of Marie Stopes International, a Patron of Population Matters and an honorary associate of the National Secular Society.