After a management career with several food manufacturing businesses which culminated in an appointment as Managing Director of Red Mill Snack Foods Ltd in the Black Country and Red Mill Company BV, the Netherlands, he was first elected to the European Parliament in 1999. In addition to his position as MEP, he was a former leader of the Conservative group in Brussels a substitute for the Committee on Environment and Public Health and also a member of the Delegation for relations with India, China and South Asia.
Having been elected Deputy Leader of the Conservative MEPs in November 2007, on 5 June 2008, Bushill-Matthews was elected Leader after Giles Chichester chose to step down in order to clear his name following allegations of withdrawing parliamentary funds for private use. During his leadership he put in place a 'Right to Know' system whereby Conservative MEPs openly declared their expenses on line. Conservative Central Office described him as "a safe pair of hands".
He was appointed Conservative Spokesman for Employment & Social Affairs following his first election as an MEP, and held this position for ten years in office. In 2007 he was also elected by fellow MEPs from across the EU to become Co-ordinator for Employment and Social Affairs for the Group of the European Peoples' Party and European Democrats. His aim was always to ensure that EU legislation was proportionate and realistic, and that employment opportunites were helped rather than hindered in the process.
In 2008 he did not submit his name for reselection as Conservative candidate at the 2009 European elections and stood down as MEP in June 2009.
Bushill-Matthews is the author of 'The Gravy Train' published in 2003 and 'Who Rules Britannia?' in 2005. He is a Fellow of the Institute of Directors.
- 1956–1962: Attended Malvern College
- 1962–1965: MA (English Language and Literature), University College, Oxford
- 1987: Harvard Business School
- 1965: Joined Unilever
- 1976: Seconded to Thomas Lipton Inc., U.S.
- 1977: National Accounts Director, Birds Eye Sales Ltd
- 1980: Managing Director, Iglo Indústrias de Gelados, Lisbon
- 1981: Sales Director, Birds Eye Wall's Ltd
- 1988: Managing Director, Craigmillar Ltd, and Director, Van den Bergh and Jurgens Ltd
- 1991: Managing Director, Red Mill Snack Foods Ltd, Wednesbury, West Midlands, and Managing Director, Red Mill Company BV, Netherlands
- 1999: Conservative MEP, European Parliament ; and Conservative Spokesman for Employment & Social Affairs, European Parliament
- 2003: Author of 'The Gravy Train'
- 2005: Author of 'Who Rules Britannia?'
- 2007: Deputy Leader of Conservative MEPs, European Parliament
- 2007: Co-ordinator for Employment and Social Affairs for European Peoples' Party and European Democrats
- 2008: Leader of Conservative MEPs
- MIdlands MEP leads battle to preserve work opt-out status, by Jonathan Walker, Birmingham Post, 10 December 2008.
- Tories sack EU chief whip in wake of expenses row, Jenny Percival ,The Guardian, Friday 6 June 2008
- Biographies of EP Moldova Delegation. EU Delegation to the 8th EU-Moldova PCC, Chisinau, 6–7 October 2005. www.europarl.europa.eu. Retrieved 10 July 2010.
- To see details of his record within the European Parliament, including questions, speeches and reports, please click on this link: MEP Career Profile : Philip BUSHILL-MATTHEWS
- Declaration (PDF) of financial interests (English)