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Learie Nicholas Constantine Is said to have headed Prime Minister Harold Wilson's New Year Honour in 1968, when he became the first black man to be elevated to the House of Lords. Constantine was a remarkable man and it is noted that he had four different careers, and he excelled in each of them. He first came to prominence as an outstanding cricketer, even in this he excelled, in all areas. He was quite probably the fastest bowler in his day, he was certainly the hardest hitting batsman, and as a fielder there has been no body like him before or since. He covered the ground so quickly when fielding, that he was knick-named electric heels, by Sir Len Hutton and co. His batting was so uninhibited, and he hit the ball with so much violence, that Sir Neville Cardus the doyen of cricket writers, feared that Constantine 'rode his own personal hurricane'. Yet he was not a tall or strongly built man which makes what he achieved on the cricket field all the more impressive. He was easily the world's highest paid cricketer, when he signed to play in the Lancashire league, after the West Indies first Test tour of England in 1928. Constantine's next career, was as Welfare Officer in the Ministry of Defence during the Second World War years. Constantine's job was to help West Indians who came up in their thousands, to fill crucial jobs in the armament drive. He was particularly successful and with excellent co-operation with the Ministry, he got them to press firm on those that were reluctant to hire black West Indians, until they were forced to take black employees, to meet the Ministry's demands. For his services during the war Constantine was awarded an MBE. Constantine knew he had to find a career after cricket, and studied law, although it took him a number of attempts before he was successful. He also made quite a name for himself as a broadcaster during and after the war, and it was said some of his broadcasts were landmarks in Light Radio broadcasting. His work here led to him eventually becoming a Governor on the board of the BBC, where he is fondly remembered as one of the best. After graduating as a barrister, he was given a prominent legal appointment back home in Trinidad, where he was to also make his mark civilly. He became involved in local politics, though reluctantly, and was given prominent political positions both pre and post independence. Such was the confidence reposed in him that one year his Ministries alone were responsible for more than half the budget expenditure of Trinidad and Tobago! He was then Knighted and appointed Trinidad & Tobago's first High Commissioner to the United Kingdom, which was a very popular appointment. He later resigned from this post, when he got himself involved in a local dispute, where a bus company was refusing to promote a black Jamaican. His involvement brought high media coverage to the dispute, and to this day it has not been confirmed, but strongly believed, that the UK government complained and that led Prime Minister Dr. Eric Williams to shun Constantine on one of his trips home. Sir Learie continued to practice law, whilst also doing a number of broadcasts for the BBC and covering Test matches for newspapers, especially when the West Indians were touring England, he also contributed greatly to British public life. Indeed he was so highly regarded, that he was asked to run for Parliament for the Liberal Party, but declined as the person who had held the seat and had just died was his friend, and a Labour MP. When Harold Wilson was leader of the opposition, he recommended Constantine's elevation to the House of Lords, however there seemed to be constitutional difficulties that stood in the way. Within a year a snap election was called, and Wilson elected Prime Minister, whatever difficulties there were, were removed and Sir Learie was elevated to the House of Lords, as Baron Constantine of Maraval in Trindad & Tobago, and of Nelson in the County Palatine of Lancaster.