On behalf of her family, it is with great sadness that we announce that Shirley Williams, Baroness Williams of Crosby, died peacefully in the early hours of Monday April 12th.
Leader of the Liberal Democrats Ed Davey said:
This is heartbreaking for me and for our whole Liberal Democrat family.
Shirley has been an inspiration to millions, a Liberal lion and a true trailblazer. I feel privileged to have known her, listened to her and worked with her. Like so many others, I will miss her terribly.
Political life will be poorer without her intellect, her wisdom and her generosity. Shirley had a limitless empathy only too rare in politics today; she connected with people, cared about their lives and saw politics as a crucial tool to change lives for the better.
As a young Liberal, Shirley Williams had a profound impact on me, as she did on countless others across the political spectrum. Her vision and bravery, not least in founding the SDP, continues to inspire Liberal Democrats today.
Rest in peace, Shirley. My thoughts and prayers are with your family and your friends.
Leader of the Liberal Democrat party in the House of Lords Dick Newby said:
Shirley Williams was a charismatic, committed and fearless politician who believed passionately in a fairer society and in Britain's European destiny. She was an inspiration and mentor to many younger politicians and maintained her campaigning zeal to the end. She was central to the formation of the SDP and the Liberal Democrats, and will be greatly missed by many in her extended political family.