Geoffrey Howe, former Conservative chancellor, dies aged 88

James Nickerson
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How was made a life peer in 1992 (Source: Getty)

Former Conservative chancellor of the exchequer Geoffrey Howe has passed away aged 88 after suffering a suspected heart attack, his family have said.

Prime Minister David Cameron has led the tributes, calling Howe the "quiet hero" of the first Thatcher government. Cameron added: "The Conservative family has lost one of its greats."

Howe became chancellor in 1979 when Margaret Thatcher swept into power, where he aimed to reduce inflation and liberalise the economy.

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Howe's family announced that he died at his home in Warwickshire after having attending a jazz concert.

Between 1989 and 1990 Howe also served as deputy Prime Minister of the UK, after having been leader of the House of Commons.

In his departure speech in 1990 Howe criticised Thatcher, which is widely believed to have contributed to her downfall.

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