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New Lib Dem peers announced

September 9, 2015 4:05 PM
Originally published by UK Liberal Democrats

Tim Farron has welcomed the appointment of new Liberal Democrat Peers to the House of Lords and their commitment to fight for reform of the second chamber.

All of the newly-nominated Lib Dem Peers have confirmed that they have joined the House of Lords with the intention of abolishing appointments and introducing elections at the earliest opportunity.

Commenting on the appointments, Tim Farron said:

"Liberal Democrats are committed to root and branch reform of the House of Lords. Today's appointments introduce a new wave of Lib Dems determined to fight for change.

"I have campaigned alongside all of our new Peers and am heartened that we can appoint people who have been such excellent public servants.

"Between them they have 200 years of representing communities locally and nationally, and will undoubtedly continue to serve with passion and integrity."

In a joint agreement the new Liberal Democrats Peers said:

"It is a great honour to be appointed to the House of Lords and we intend to play a full and active part in its work. We remain committed to reform and for a democratic system to replace patronage."

The full list of new peers is as follows:

SIR ALAN BEITH

Alan Beith held the parliamentary seat of Berwick-upon-Tweed for 42 years, winning the by-election there in November 1973. He stood down at the General Election in May this year.

Alan is a former Chief Whip of the Liberal Party, a former Home Affairs Spokesperson for the Liberal Democrats, and a former Deputy Leader of both the Liberal Party and the Liberal Democrats. In the House of Commons, he served for 18 years as a member of the House of Commons Commission, and also served on the Treasury Select Committee. He chaired the Justice Select Committee between 2010 and 2015.

SHARON BOWLES

Sharon Bowles was a member of the European Parliament for the South East Region from 2005 until 2014.

Before becoming an MEP, Sharon worked as a European patent attorney, the only one ever to sit in the European Parliament.

In 2005 she replaced Chris Huhne in the European Parliament when he was elected to the Commons. She sat on the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, and became a substitute member of the Committee on Legal Affairs.

She also served as a member of the European Parliament's delegation for relations with the countries of South East Asia. Re-elected to the European Parliament in 2009, she was elected chair of the Committee on Economic and Monetary Affairs, and then re-elected to this role in 2012, serving until the end of the parliamentary term in 2014.

In August 2014 she became a non-executive director of the London Stock Exchange Group PLC.

SIR MALCOLM BRUCE

Malcolm Bruce held the parliamentary seat of Gordon from 1983, until he stood down at the General Election in May this year.

At various times, he has served as Liberal Democrat spokesperson for Energy, Trade, the Environment and the Treasury.

He was leader of the Scottish Liberal Democrats between 1988 and 1992 and Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats between 2014 and 2015. He served as chairman of the Commons International Development Select Committee between 2005 and 2015.

LORELY BURT

Lorely Burt held the parliamentary seat of Solihull from 2005 until the General Election in May this year.

Following her election, Lorely served at various times as a Liberal Democrat spokesperson on Northern Ireland, Small Business, Women and Equality, and Business, Enterprise and Regulatory Reform. In October 2007 she was elected as the party's first female Chair of the Liberal Democrats' Parliamentary Party. She also served on the Treasury Select Committee.

In 2013 Lorely was appointed Parliamentary Private Secretary to Danny Alexander in the Treasury. In 2014 she was appointed the government's Ambassador for Women in Enterprise and later as an Assistant Government Whip.

SIR MENZIES CAMPBELL

Menzies Campbell held the parliamentary seat of North-East Fife from 1987 until he stood down at the General Election in May this year.

He was called to the Bar in Scotland in 1968 and was appointed Queen's Counsel in 1984. Ming served as Foreign Affairs Spokesperson for the Liberal Democrats between 1992 and 2006, was Deputy Leader of the party between 2003 and 2006, and then Leader of the Liberal Democrats between 2006 and 2007.

He has been a member of several Commons Select Committee, including the Defence and Foreign Affairs Select Committee, as well as a member of Parliament's Intelligence and Security Committee.

Menzies held the British record for the 100 metre sprint between 1967 and 1974, and captained the Great Britain athletic team in 1965 and 1966. He is currently Chancellor of the University of St. Andrews.

LYNNE FEATHERSTONE

Lynne Featherstone held the parliamentary seat of Hornsey and Wood Green from 2005 until the General Election in May this year.

Lynne has variously served as the Liberal Democrat spokesperson for London and International Development, and as member of the home affairs team.

In May 2010 Lynne was appointed a minister in the Home Office with responsibility for equalities. There she was the architect and originator of Equal Marriage. In 2012 she moved to the Department for International Development, where she spearheaded the campaign to end FGM within a generation. Lynne returned to the Home Office in 2014 as Minister of State for Crime Prevention, championing support for victims of domestic violence.

DON FOSTER

Don Foster held the parliamentary seat of Bath from 1992 until he stood down at the General Election in May this year.

Following his election, at various times Don served as Liberal Democrat spokesperson for Education, Environment, Work and Pensions, Transport, and Culture, Media and Sport. In 2012 he became a minister for Communities and Local Government and in 2013 he was appointed as Government Deputy Chief Whip in the Commons, a position he held until the election.

JONNY OATES

Jonny Oates is a former Liberal Democrat councillor and Deputy Leader in Kingston-upon-Thames. He was Ed Davey's election agent in 1997 when he took the seat of Kingston and Surbiton from the Conservatives.

Jonny has worked in a number of political, communications and public affairs roles for Westminster Strategy, the Westminster Foundation for Democracy, Bolland & Associates and Bell Pottinger Public Affairs. He also served as Policy and Communications Co-ordinator at the Youth Justice Board.

He served as Director of Policy and Communications for the Liberal Democrats and in 2009 was appointed Director of General Election Communications for the 2010 General Election. From 2010 Jonny served as Chief of Staff to Nick Clegg.

SHAS SHEEHAN

Shas Sheehan was the Liberal Democrat candidate in the parliamentary seat of Wimbledon in 2010 and in the General Election in May this year. She was previously a councillor for Kew, serving as Assistant Cabinet Member for Climate Change, a member of the Planning Committee, Children's Services Committee and Health Committee.

Shas has also worked as a chemistry teacher, an auxiliary nurse at New Cross Hospital and as a senior planner/buyer in advertising. She took a volunteer role with the Liberal Democrats which then led to a political career as Head of Office to Susan Kramer when she was MP for Richmond Park.

SIR ANDREW STUNELL

Andrew Stunell held the parliamentary seat of Hazel Grove from 1997, until he stood down at the General Election in May this year.

He served as Liberal Democrat spokesperson for Energy between 1997 and 2005 and served as Chief Whip in the Commons between 2001 and 2006. He then served as the party's local government spokesperson until 2007, when he became chair of the party's local elections team. He has served on the International Development Select Committee.

In the aftermath of the 2010 General Election Andrew was a member of the Liberal Democrat team that negotiated the Coalition Agreement. He was appointed a minister in the Department for Communities and Local Government when the Coalition was formed, where he was responsible for community cohesion and race equality. He served in that role until 2012.

Before he got involved in politics, Andrew was an architectural assistant.

DOROTHY THORNHILL

Dorothy Thornhill has served as Mayor of Watford since May 2002. She was the first ever elected mayor for the town, as well as being the Liberal Democrats' first directly elected mayor, and also the first female directly elected mayor in the UK.

She was re-elected as mayor in May 2006, gaining more than 50% of the vote in the first round, and was then re-elected for a third time in May 2010, becoming only the second directly elected mayor in the UK to achieve this feat.

Dorothy has had a teaching career spanning over 25 years, and was an assistant head teacher in Hertfordshire for several years.