Election 2015: Who are the UK political party leaders?

  • 8 April 2015
Composite image of the seven party leaders potentially involved in the TV debates of the 2015 general election. L-R: Leanne Wood (Plaid Cymru), Nigel Farage (Ukip), Nicola Sturgeon (SNP), David Cameron (Conservative), Natalie Bennett (Green Party), Nick Clegg (Liberal Democrat), Ed Miliband (Labour).
Image caption The seven party leaders are trying to convince adults to vote for them at the general election - but who are they?

Wood, Farage, Sturgeon, Cameron, Bennett, Clegg and Miliband - seven names you will be hearing lots of in the run up to the UK's general election.

On 7 May, adults up and down the country will choose which politician, and which party, they want to be in power for the next five years.

But just who are the seven party leaders, who are playing such a big part in the UK's closest election race for decades?

Here is everything you need to know about the party leaders - all in one place.

David Cameron

Image copyright AFP/getty images

Who is he?

The Prime Minister and the leader of the Conservative Party. He's 48, was born in London and grew up in Berkshire.

Where did he go to school?

Eton College, which is a very old and famous private school, and Oxford University.

Family

He and his wife Samantha have had four children, Ivan, Nancy, Arthur and Florence. In 2009, their first son Ivan died when he was just six, after he was born with a rare disorder.

Any jobs before becoming a politician?

He worked for a TV company in London for seven years.

Career highlight?

In 2010, he became the youngest Prime Minister in nearly 200 years - since Robert Banks Jenkinson, the 2nd Earl of Liverpool took office in 1812.

Biggest blooper?

He had to say sorry to the Queen after revealing that she had "purred down the line" on hearing the result that Scotland voted "No" to independence.

What you might not know about him

He has some royal blood - he's a direct descendant of King William IV and is a very, very, distant relative of the Queen.

David Cameron supports Aston Villa and some of his favourite bands include The Killers, Radiohead and REM.

Ed Miliband

Who is he?

Leader of the Labour Party, which is the main opposition party to the current coalition government. He's 45 and was born in London.

Where did he go to school?

Haverstock Comprehensive School in north London and Oxford University.

Family

Married to lawyer, Justine. They have two sons.

Any jobs before becoming a politician?

He taught at Harvard, an American University, for a year before returning to politics.

Career highlight?

Becoming the Labour party leader in 2010, beating his elder brother David for the job.

Biggest blooper?

A bad media appearance where lots of photographers captured Ed eating a bacon sandwich in public in a really awkward way.

What you might not know about him

Ed could solve a Rubik's cube in 90 seconds when he was kid.

His favourite bands are Bastille and Norwegian pop group A-ha (ask your parents!)

Nick Clegg

Image copyright PA

Who is he?

He is the Deputy Prime Minister and the leader of the Liberal Democrats. For the last five years, he's been working together with prime minister David Cameron in the Government.

He's 48 and was born in Buckinghamshire, England.

Where did he go to school?

Nick went to the private Westminster School in central London, which is a stone's throw from the Houses of Parliament. He then went to Cambridge University. His favourite activities were tennis - he captained the school team - and acting.

Family

He's married to a Spanish lawyer called Miriam and they have three sons. Nick splits his time between his homes in Sheffield and London, where his kids go to school.

Any jobs before becoming a politician?

He was a journalist for The Financial Times. Nick was also a Member of the European Parliament before he became an MP in Westminster.

Career highlight?

A great performance during the 2010 general election campaign thrust Nick into the spotlight and led to him becoming Deputy Prime Minister in a coalition government. (What does 'coalition' mean? - Find out here)

Biggest blooper?

A funny music video made from one of Nick's speeches went viral.

What you might not know about him

Nick can speak five languages - English, French, Dutch, German and Spanish

He likes music by Prince and David Bowie, and reckons he's rubbish at karaoke!

Nigel Farage

Image copyright PA

Who is he?

The leader of UK Independence Party (UKIP). He's 51 and was born in Kent, England.

Where did he go to school?

Dulwich College, a private school in London.

Family

He's married to Kirsten, who is German and his second wife. Nigel has four children in total - two with his ex-wife and two with his current wife.

Any jobs before becoming a politician?

Nigel worked as a trader in the City of London for 20 years.

Career highlight?

In November 2014, UKIP gained its first ever elected MP in the House of Commons. 6 weeks later, Mark Reckless won the party's second seat.

Low point?

Nigel was injured in a plane crash on the morning of the last General election day in 2010. He also failed to become an MP that day too.

What you might not know about him

He loves cricket and has even appeared on the famous BBC radio show Test Match Special.

Unusually for a leader of a major political party he did not go to university.

Natalie Bennett

Image copyright Reuters

Who is she?

The leader of the Green Party of England and Wales. She's 49 and was born in Sydney, Australia.

Where did she go to school?

Natalie went to the private MLC School in Australia before going to the University of Sydney.

Family

She lives with her partner Jim in north London.

Any jobs before becoming a politician?

She was a journalist. Natalie started on local newspapers in Australia, and then worked for British newspapers including The Guardian and The Times.

Career highlight?

She was made the Green Party leader in 2012.

Biggest blooper?

In February 2015, she took part in a bad radio interview with the host describing it afterwards as "one of the worst interviews ever by a political leader". Natalie crumbled under the pressure and couldn't answer some basic questions about her party's policies. (What's a 'policy'? - Find out here)

What you might not know about her

She has lived in the UK since 1999.

Nicola Sturgeon

Image copyright Getty Images

Who is she?

The leader of the Scottish National Party (SNP) and the first female First Minister of Scotland. She's 44 and was born in Ayrshire, south-west Scotland.

Where did she go to school?

Greenwood Academy, a state school in North Ayrshire, and the University of Glasgow.

Family

She lives in Glasgow with her husband Peter. They have been married since 2010.

Any jobs before becoming a politician?

Nicola was a lawyer before focusing on politics full-time.

Career highlight?

Becoming a household name during the Scottish independence referendum alongside former SNP leader Alex Salmond.

Low point?

Scotland choosing to stay in the United Kingdom after voters said no to independence.

What you might not know about her

She became a member of the SNP at the age of 16.

Leanne Wood

Image copyright PA

Who is she?

The leader of Plaid Cymru, who want Wales to become an independent country. She's 43 and was born in Rhondda, Wales.

Where did she go to school?

She studied at Tonypandy Comprehensive School and the University of Glamorgan.

Family

She lives with her partner and her daughter, Cerys.

Any jobs before becoming a politician?

Leanne worked as a probation officer, a support worker and a tutor at Cardiff University before she was elected as a politician.

Career highlight?

She was elected leader of the party in March 2012.

Biggest blooper?

In 2004, she referred to Her Majesty the Queen as 'Mrs Windsor' during a debate in the Welsh National Assembly. She was asked to take back the comment because it was thought to be rude but she refused.

What you might not know about her

She is learning to speak the Welsh language.

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