Jacqueline Foster

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The Baroness Foster of Oxton
Official portrait of Baroness Foster of Oxton crop 2, 2021.jpg
Official Portrait, 2021
Member of the House of Lords
Lord Temporal
Assumed office
29 January 2021
Life peerage
Deputy Leader of the Conservative MEPs in the European Parliament
In office
20 November 2013 – 1 July 2019
Member of the European Parliament for North West England
In office
4 June 2009 – 1 July 2019[1][2]
Preceded byDavid Sumberg
Succeeded byChris Davies
In office
10 June 1999 – 10 June 2004
Preceded byPosition established
Succeeded bySajjad Karim
Personal details
Jacqueline Renshaw

Liverpool, England
Political partyConservative
Other political
Alliance of Conservatives and Reformists in Europe
AwardsCoronet of a British Baron.svg Life peer

Jacqueline Foster, Baroness Foster of Oxton, DBE (née Renshaw) is a British Conservative politician and a former Member of the European Parliament for the North West England region.

In October 2019 she was appointed Dame Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire. In January 2021, she was elevated to the Lords as Baroness Foster of Oxton, of Oxton in the County of Merseyside.[3][4]

Early career[edit]

Jacqueline Foster was born in Liverpool and educated at Prescot Girls' Grammar School.

Between 1981 and '85 she left British Airways and became Area Manager in Austria for Horizon, a British Tour Operator before returning to British Airways four years later. In 1989, she was one of the founder members of Cabin Crew '89, an independent trade union and served as the Deputy General Secretary. She continued with British Airways until she was elected as an MEP in 1999. She also lived and worked in France and Spain and speaks French and German.

Political involvement[edit]

Foster combined her trade union activities with membership of the Conservative Party, serving as Vice Chairman of Twickenham Conservative Association as well as holding a variety of voluntary political offices for the Greater London area.

At the 1992 general election, she was the Conservative candidate in Newham South, a Labour-held seat in east London. In August 1996 she was selected for the marginal seat of Peterborough (where sitting Conservative MP Brian Mawhinney was moving to an adjacent constituency) and finished second behind Labour in the general election of 1997.

In 1988, following Margaret Thatcher’s Bruges Speech she opposed Britain joining a single currency as well as signing up to the Social Chapter and was concerned by the direction in which the European Community was moving. She spoke publicly and frequently on these matters, hence her interest in standing for the European elections in 1999.

She supported the United Kingdom leaving the EU in the 2016 Referendum.

Member of European Parliament[edit]

At the 1999 European Parliament election, Foster was selected by Conservatives in the North West as fifth on their list. During this first mandate (1999-2004), she was elected annually as the chairman of the Backbench Committee of MEPs. Her political responsibilities were as the Conservative Spokesman on Transport and Tourism and as a Member of the Industry Committee.

Following 9/11 she was the Rapporteur for the Regulation which introduced minimum standards of security at airports across Europe. These measures were overwhelmingly supported by all Member States. In addition, due to her vast experience in the airline industry she was also instrumental in introducing key legislation covering Passenger Rights, Single European Sky ATM, Slots, Ground handling, Crew Operations, GNSS, Traffic rights and much more during her 15 years as an MEP.

She was a member of the Sky & Space Parliamentary Intergroup and also a Member of the Animal Welfare Parliamentary Intergroup and also sat as a Member of the African, Caribbean and Pacific Joint Parliamentary Assembly and was the Parliament Spokesman on Zimbabwe. Following a fundamental disagreement with the representatives of the Mugabe regime she, along with some other colleagues were subsequently banned from entering Zimbabwe.

Foster was re-selected as a candidate for the 2004 European Parliament election in fourth position on the Conservative list, but was not re-elected when the Conservatives won only three seats.

However, in 2009 she was placed third on the Conservative list for the North West in the European Parliament election and was elected as an MEP, with the Conservatives winning three seats for a second time.[5] She was, again, appointed as the Transport Spokesman and also served as a Vice President of the Sky & Space and Animal Welfare Parliamentary Intergroups and as a Member of the EU-US Delegation. In addition she sat as a member of the Environment Committee.

She was elected Deputy Leader of the Conservative delegation of MEPs in 2013, and was re-elected annually until 2019. In 2013, she argued against the Conservative Party having an electoral pact with UK Independence Party.[6]

Foster topped the ballot of the North West Candidates list for the 2014 European Parliament election.

Following the election she was re-appointed as the Conservative Transport Spokesman and continued to work closely with the US authorities on Aviation Security. She was also the Spokesman on Tourism.

She was the Rapporteur/ draftsman of the groundbreaking 'Report on the Safe Use of RPAS' (drones) in the civil sector.[7] She remained on the Environment Committee. She was re-elected as a Vice-President of both the Sky & Space and Animal Welfare Parliamentary Intergroups. She remained a Member of the EU/US Parliamentary Delegation and was elected Vice-President of the Australia/New Zealand Delegation with the focus on securing future trade deals.

Foster did not contest the 2019 European election as she had fully supported the UK position on Brexit.

Work outside of European Parliament[edit]

Having specialised in the aviation sector, she became an adviser to Airbus on EU legislation following which she was appointed Head of European Affairs for the Aerospace, Space and Defence Industries of Europe (ASD), based in Brussels (2005-2009).[citation needed]

She has been frequently invited to address Aviation/ Aerospace conferences over the years, such as the Royal Aeronautical Society (Aviation Security & Drones) as well as providing political comment on media outlets. She is a member of the RAeS and the European Aviation Club.

As the Transport Spokesman, Foster was also involved in all Maritime Legislation during her period in office and subsequently served as a Director and Board Member of Mersey Maritime Ltd. (2016-2019) (Unpaid)

Foster sits as a Senior Advisor on the Drone Delivery Group. [8]

House of Lords[edit]

Foster was appointed Dame Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire (DBE) in the 2019 Queen’s Birthday Honours She was appointed to the House of Lords on 29th January 2021 and introduced on the 9 February 2021.[9] She is a Vice Chairman of the APPG on Pandemic Response and a Vice Chairman of the APPG on the Future of Aviation along with the APPGs on Aerospace, Business Travel, General Aviation and the Armed Forces.


  1. ^ "Key dates ahead". European Parliament. 20 May 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2019.
  2. ^ "Key dates ahead". BBC News. 22 May 2017. Retrieved 28 May 2019.
  3. ^ "Political Peerages 2020". Gov.uk. Retrieved 22 December 2020.
  4. ^ "Crown Office". The Gazette. 2 February 2021. Retrieved 11 February 2021.
  5. ^ "European elections 2009: North West region". The Telegraph. 26 May 2009. ISSN 0307-1235. Retrieved 25 July 2018.
  6. ^ "Farage: Tory MPs want UKIP deal". BBC News. 1 October 2013. Retrieved 25 July 2018.
  7. ^ "Jacqueline Foster on new rules for drones: 'The key here is to ensure their safe use" [sic]". European Parliament. 29 October 2015. Retrieved 19 July 2016.
  8. ^ "Lords Register of Interests". 30 March 2023. Retrieved 30 March 2023.
  9. ^ "No. 62666". The London Gazette (Supplement). 8 June 2019. p. B8.