1939 – He was born on the 25th of September in London to parents of Lithuanian Jewish extraction.
1970 – He was elected to parliament in the general election of February 1974 for Cleveland and Whitby.
1976 – He became an opposition spokesman.
1978 – He was made a Queen’s Counsel.
1979-1981 – He was Minister of State at the Home Office, and then was made Chief Secretary to the Treasury, a Cabinet position.
1983 – In election, he changed his seat to Richmond, Yorkshire.
1983-1985 – He was Home Secretary, and was then moved to Secretary of State for Trade and Industry.
1989 – He was made a commissioner at the European Commission, resigning as an MP at this time.
1999 – He resigned with the rest of the commission, amid accusations of widespread fraud.