Patricia McLoughlin on the Seenozip scandal

Patricia McLoughlin on the Seenozip scandal

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Belfast, Havelock House, Newry




Production 20/12/1963


02min 10sec





black and white


Funded by the Broadcasting Authority of Ireland under the Archiving Scheme 2


Broadcasting Authority of Ireland, Department for Communities, ITV, UTV Archive

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Interview with Patricia McLoughlin, Unionist MP regards a financial scandal involving the zip manufacturing company, Seenozip.  

Seenozip had commenced trading in Newry in 1960, with her support: she was a director of the firm. Fiscal irregularities were brought to her attention and she resigned in 1962. Nevertheless, to some she was still tainted when the company went bankrupt in 1964, as it emerged that she had accepted free shares in the company. Two of its directors were jailed for defrauding the Northern Ireland Government of tens of thousands of pounds. Although criticised by a Northern Ireland scrutiny committee in October 1964, she was unanimously reselected to contest the seat, but declined the candidacy. 


Patricia McLaughlin was the first woman MP to be elected in Northern Ireland. Her main focus was on promoting trade and industry in Northern Ireland. She was Honorary Secretary of the Parliamentary Home Safety Committee 1956-64, Delegate to the Council of Europe and the Western European Union (the Western European defence cooperation agreement) 1959-64, vice-chaired the Women’s National Advisory Committee of the Conservative Party, and was National Advisor on Women’s Affairs to the European Movement. She was unceasing in her promotion of Northern Irish goods while at Westminster, never hesitating to draw attention to the fact that all her clothes were produced in Northern Ireland, mostly though not exclusively from linen (still a major commodity in the Northern Irish economy). She was a member of the BBC Northern Ireland Advisory Council, and a special interest was expressed by her Vice-Presidency of the Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents, 1962-1985. She chaired the Steering Group on Food Freshness, 1973-1975, and was a member of the Executive Committee of the British Standards Institution. Alongside all this, she was also an active churchwoman, frequently a diocesan delegate at Anglican conferences. 



An Ulster Television Production.



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