Former Labour home secretary Roy Jenkins was seduced by a gay university friend who later became a Cabinet colleague, a new biography claims.

Lord Jenkins of Hillhead, who died in 2003 at the age of 82, was the driving force behind the decriminalisation of homosexuality in England and Wales in 1967.

Although he never described himself as gay and went on to marry and have a string of mistresses, he had an intense friendship with Tony Crosland, a contemporary at Oxford.

Crosland later served as a minister in the Labour governments of Harold Wilson and James Callaghan.

John Campbell, the author of ‘Roy Jenkins: A Well-Rounded Life’ claims that Jenkins’ attraction for Crosland, who was openly gay at the time, was “probably sexual”.

Years after they first met Jenkins revealed that Crosland had seduced him on more than one occasion, the author wrote in the Mail.

Roy Jenkins cofounded the SDP, which later merged with the Liberals to form the Liberal Democrats.