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Long-serving frontbenchers and the Spadocracy dominate the 2015 dissolution peers

27 August 2015

1:42 PM

27 August 2015

1:42 PM

The 2015 Dissolution Peerages have been announced, with many of the names floated in the press over the last few weeks duly being elevated to the House of Lords. The appointment of long-serving politicians such as William Hague, Alistair Darling, Ming Campbell and David Blunkett is not a surprise, but there are a few unexpected names. The most striking is Tessa Jowell, who is running to be Labour’s London mayoral candidate. If Jowell wins the nomination, she would end up doing a Boris and serving in City Hall and Westminster.

The Spadocracy is well represented too, with former advisers James O’Shaughnessy (Conservative), Jonny Oates (Lib Dem) and Spencer Livermore (Labour) receiving peerages, while Kate Fall and Philippa Stroud are still in government. Most crucially for the Tories, these operators will help drive their legislative agenda through the second chamber.

There will be plenty of controversy over the 11 Lib Dem peers — three more than the number of MPs in the House of Commons. It was meant to be even bigger but David Laws was reportedly barred by the appointments commission. Given that the party has long campaigned to abolish the second chamber, making it even larger seems a tad hypocritical. In a statement, the new Lib Dem 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’

And for those who didn’t get a peerage, knighthoods have been given to Danny Alexander and Vince Cable, as well as OBEs for David Cameron’s former speechwriter Clare Foges, former Treasury Spad Ramesh Chhabra and another No.10 speechwriter Ameet Gill, who is now the PM’s director of strategy. CBEs have been granted to Rupert Harrison, who was until recently George Osborne’s chief of staff, former No. 10 deputy chief of staff Oliver Dowden and Liz Sugg, the Downing Street director of operations. 


Here is a full list of the 45 new peers:

Conservatives – 26

  • James Arbuthnot – former MP for North East Hampshire and Front Bench Minister
  • Rt Hon Gregory Barker – former MP for Bexhill and Battle and former Minister of State at the Department for Energy and Climate Change
  • Catherine Fall – Deputy Chief of Staff to the Prime Minister
  • Simone Finn – Special Adviser to the Minister of State for Trade
  • Stephen Gilbert – Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party
  • Rt Hon William Hague – former MP for Richmond and former Foreign Secretary
  • Robert Hayward OBE – former MP for Kingswood, Board Member of Dignity in Dying and Trustee for the YMCA
  • Rt Hon Douglas Hogg QC – former MP for Sleaford and North Hykeham and held several ministerial roles
  • Rt Hon Andrew Lansley CBE – former MP for South Cambridgeshire and former Cabinet Minister
  • James Lupton CBE – Chairman of Greenhill Europe and former Co-Treasurer of the Conservative Party
  • Ruby McGregor-Smith CBE – CEO of Mitie Group PLC
  • Anne McIntosh – former MP for Thirsk and Malton and Chairman of the Environment, Food and Rural Affairs Select Committee
  • Michelle Mone OBE – leading entrepreneur and sits on the Board of Directors for The Prince’s Scottish Youth Business Trust
  • James O’Shaughnessy – Managing Director of Floreat Education
  • Emma Pidding CBE – former Chiltern District Councillor and former Chairman of the National Conservative Convention
  • Stuart Polak CBE – Director of the Conservative Friends of Israel
  • Councillor Gary Porter – Councillor for South Holland District Council and Chairman of the Local Government Association
  • Councillor Elizabeth Redfern – Leader of North Lincolnshire Council
  • Rt Hon Andrew Robathan – former MP for South Leicestershire and several Front Bench and government roles
  • Kate Rock – Vice-Chairman of the Conservative Party
  • Councillor Jane Scott OBE – Leader of the Wiltshire Council
  • Kevin Shinkwin – longstanding voluntary sector professional
  • Philip Smith CBE – Chief Executive of the Association of Conservative Clubs
  • Philippa Stroud – Special Adviser to the Secretary of State for Work and Pensions
  • Rt Hon David Willetts – former MP for Havant and several Front Bench roles
  • Rt Hon Sir George Young Bt CH – former MP for North West Hampshire and former Cabinet Minister

Liberal Democrats – 11

  • Sir Alan Beith – former MP for Berwick-upon-Tweed and former Chair of the Justice Select Committee
  • Sharon Bowles – former MEP for South East England
  • Sir Malcolm Bruce – former MP for Gordon, and former Deputy Leader of the Liberal Democrats
  • Lorley Burt – former MP for Solihull and former Chair of the Liberal Democrats
  • Rt Hon Sir Menzies ‘Ming’ Campbell CH, CBE, QC – former MP for North East Fife and former Leader of the Liberal Democrats
  • Lynne Featherstone – former MP for Hornsey and Wood Green and held several ministerial positions
  • Don Foster – former MP for Bath and former Liberal Democrat Chief Whip
  • Jonny Oates – former Chief of Staff to the Deputy Prime Minister in the coalition government
  • Shas Sheehan – former Councillor for Kew and involved in several community groups
  • Sir Andrew Stunell – former MP for Hazel Grove and former Department for Communities and Local Government Minister
  • Dorothy Thornhill MBE – Mayor of Watford; former Councillor and Assistant Headteacher

Labour – 8

  • Rt Hon David Blunkett – former MP for Sheffield Brightside and Hillsborough and former Cabinet Minister
  • Rt Hon Alistair Darling – former MP for Edinburgh South West and former Cabinet Minister
  • Rt Hon Peter Hain – former MP for Neath and former Cabinet Minister
  • Rt Hon Tessa Jowell DBE – former MP for Dulwich and West Norwood and former Cabinet Minister
  • Spencer Livermore – senior Campaign Strategist for the Labour Party
  • Paul Murphy – former MP for Torfaen and former Cabinet Minister
  • Rt Hon Dawn Primarolo DBE – former MP for Bristol South and former Minister
  • Dave Watts – former MP for St Helens North and former Chair of Parliamentary Labour Party

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