Peta Buscombe, Baroness Buscombe
Peta Jane Buscombe, Baroness Buscombe (née O'Flynn, born 12 March 1954) is an English barrister, regulator and politician. She is a Conservative member of the House of Lords. Lady Buscombe was Chairwoman of the Press Complaints Commission from April 2009 until 16 October 2011. She has served as Chief Executive of the Advertising Association.
She was educated at Rosebery Grammar School, Epsom, and the Inns of Court School of Law. She was called to the Bar at the Inner Temple in 1977 and worked as a Legal Advisor for the Dairy Trade Federation from 1979 to 1980. She then worked for Barclays Bank International and Barclays Bank plc until 1984, after which she was Assistant Secretary for the Institute of Practitioners in Advertising until 1987.
She stood as the Conservative candidate in Slough at the 1997 General Election.
She is a Director of Three Valleys Water and was formerly joint managing partner of Buscombe and Fiala, an International Art Business, and Legal Counsel for Barclays Bank.
In 1998 she was made a Life peer as Baroness Buscombe, of Goring in the County of Oxfordshire. She has been a Conservative front bench spokesman in the House of Lords on several briefs including Trade and Industry, Social Security, Legal Affairs, Cabinet Office Affairs, Home Office and Culture, Media and Sport.
Her voting record has been summarised from Public Whip. She has voted moderately against introducing ID cards, more EU integration, a stricter asylum system and the hunting ban. She has voted against equal gay rights. She has voted a mixture of for and against laws to stop climate change. She voted moderately for greater autonomy for schools. She has never voted on allowing ministers to intervene in inquests.
Under her leadership the Press Complaints Commission came under criticism for a perception that it was ineffective in investigating the phone hacking scandal at the News of the World. The editor of one national newspaper was quoted as saying "it was never given the power or the teeth to do anything. When it takes testimony from newspapers it is very limited. News International ran rings around John Yates, one of the most senior policemen in the country, so it was easy to run rings around Baroness Buscombe." She announced her resignation as PCC chair after phone-hacking lawyer Mark Lewis called for it following criticism of its handling of the phone hacking scandal at the News of the World. In November 2010, the Commission formally apologised and paid an undisclosed sum in libel damages for misleading remarks made by her about lawyer Mark Lewis.
She married Philip John Buscombe in 1980.
- "Forthcoming Marriages", The Times, 21 March 1980
- Bell, Matthew (22 November 2009). "The Tory peer who wants to convince us the PCC has teeth". The Independent (London). Retrieved 22 November 2009.
- Dan Sabbagh (13 October 2011). "Lord Hunt of Wirral named chairman of Press Complaints Commission". The Guardian. Retrieved 13 October 2011.
- Lisa O'Carroll, "The future of regulation after the PCC", The Guardian, 14 July 2011 
- Sweney, Mark (29 July 2011). "PCC confirms Baroness Buscombe is to step down". The Guardian. Retrieved 29 July 2011.
- Nick Davies, "PCC chairman faces resignation call following high court apology", The Guardian, 25 November 2010. 
- Profile at the Press Complaints Commission
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Contributions in Parliament at Hansard 1803–2005
- Current session contributions in Parliament at Hansard
- Voting record at PublicWhip.org
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou.com
- Profile at Westminster Parliamentary Record
- Profile at BBC News Democracy Live
- Peta Buscombe collected news and commentary at The Guardian
|Chair of the Press Complaints Commission