Member of the House of Lords
Baroness Blood, MBE is a Labour member of the House of Lords.
May was born and raised in Belfast and worked in a linen mill from 1952-90 where she soon became an active member of the trade union and a shop steward. She was involved in creating the women’s committee in the Trade Union and promoting equality for women at work. Later she worked as a manager of Cairn Martin Wood Products from 1991-94.
Since 1994, she has been an Information Officer of the Greater Shankill Partnership and is a founding member of the Northern Ireland Women’s Coalition. In 1998, she was awarded an honorary degree from the University of Ulster and was created a life peeress as Baroness Blood, of Blackwatertown in the County of Armagh on 31 July 1999. She was the first woman in Northern Ireland to be given a life peerage.
She received an honorary D.Univ from the Queen’s University of Belfast in 2000, and again from the Open University the following year. In 2007, she published her autobiography, Watch my Lips, I’m Speaking. In January 2013, Baroness Blood was awarded the Grassroot Diplomat Initiative Award under the Social Driver category for her tireless campaign for integrated education in Northern Ireland, where she helped to raise over £15 million.