|The Right Honourable
The Viscount Thurso
of the Finance and Services Committee
6 May 2010
|Preceded by||Sir Stuart Bell|
|Member of Parliament
for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross
7 June 2001
|Preceded by||Robert Maclennan|
10 September 1953 |
Thurso, Caithness, Scotland
|Political party||Liberal Democrats|
|Spouse(s)||Marion née Sage,
now Viscountess Thurso
|Children||1 daughter, 2 sons|
Education, family and non-political career
John Sinclair was educated in Thurso and at Eton College. Thurso joined the Savoy Group as a management trainee in 1972 and following this worked for many years in the hospitality industry. His achievements included managing the Lancaster in Paris (1981–85) and founding the hotel at Cliveden (1985–92) before becoming CEO of Granfel Holdings, owners of East Sussex National Golf Course from 1992 to 1995. Finally from 1995 until his election to parliament in 2001 he was CEO of the Champneys Group. During his time in this job he featured in the TV documentary Trouble at the Top - Shape up with Lord Thurso.
Lord Thurso comes from a family of Liberal parliamentarians. The former constituency of Caithness and Sutherland had been held by his grandfather, Archibald Sinclair from 1922 until 1945. Archibald Sinclair was the 1st Viscount Thurso and a Liberal Party leader. Thurso has been married to Marion for 26 years and they have a daughter and two sons. The family live at Thurso, Caithness.
Thurso holds the Presidency of The Tourism Society and the Academy of Food and Wine Service. He is a Fellow of Confederation of Tourism and Hospitality (HCIMA) (FIH) and served as its Patron for six years, until June 2003. He is President of the British International Spa Association, a Trustee of the Clan Sinclair Trust, and Patron of the Bluebell Railway 50th Anniversary Appeal. In that capacity, on 24 April 2009, at the railway's Horsted Keynes station he carried out the ceremonial renaming of the Battle of Britain class locomotive named after his grandfather, Sir Archibald Sinclair, Secretary of State for Air during that battle.
Following his father’s death in 1995 he took his seat in the House of Lords as the 3rd Viscount Thurso where he became spokesman on Tourism and later Food Matters. Thurso spoke many times in the House of Lords in favour of Lords reform. His automatic right as a hereditary peer to sit in the House of Lords was abolished in 1999, and he did not attempt to remain in that capacity. At the 2001 general election he was elected to the House of Commons to represent Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross becoming the first British hereditary peer elected to sit in the House of Commons without having to disclaim his title. He served as Liberal Democrat Shadow Scotland Secretary under Charles Kennedy, but was sacked by Sir Menzies Campbell. He has publicly gone against party policy by declaring his support for nuclear power, and his criticism of 24-hour drinking and wind power.
- BISA Council and Associates British International Spa Association
- Parkinson, Justin (22 February 2011). "John Thurso: The hereditary peer who became an MP". BBC News. Retrieved 29 December 2011.
- Uncredited (3 November 2001). "Kennedy boosts his frontbench team". The Scotsman. Retrieved 29 December 2011.
One of the notable changes was the promotion of new MP Lord John Thurso (Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross) to the Scottish affairs brief.
- Edwards, Rob (5 March 2006). "Nuclear power: splitting the LibDems and Labour". Sunday Herald. Retrieved 29 December 2011.
Leaked correspondence from shadow Scottish secretary John Thurso MP, who favours nuclear power, suggests pressure is mounting within the party to reverse this policy.
- John Thurso MP official site
- Profile at the Liberal Democrats
- Profile at the Scottish Liberal Democrats
- Hansard 1803–2005: contributions in Parliament by John Thurso
- Profile at Parliament of the United Kingdom
- Current session contributions in Parliament at Hansard
- Electoral history and profile at The Guardian
- Voting record at Public Whip
- Record in Parliament at TheyWorkForYou
- Profile at Westminster Parliamentary Record
- Profile at BBC News Democracy Live
|Parliament of the United Kingdom|
|Member of Parliament for Caithness, Sutherland and Easter Ross
|Peerage of the United Kingdom|
Robin MacDonald Sinclair