Thomas Taylor, Baron Taylor of Blackburn

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Thomas Taylor, Baron Taylor of Blackburn CBE (born 10 June 1929) is a former Labour member of the House of Lords. He is notable for being one of the first peers suspended from the House of Lords since the 17th century.


Taylor became a member of Blackburn Town Council in 1954 and was its Leader from 1972–76.[1]

Taylor was appointed an Officer of the Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 1969 Birthday Honours,[2] and promoted to a Commander (CBE) in the 1974 Birthday Honours.[3] He was created a Life Peer on 4 May 1978 taking the title Baron Taylor of Blackburn, of Blackburn in the County of Lancashire.[4]

From 1977-80 he was Chairman of the Electricity Consultative Council for the North West and a member of the Board of Norweb; He served on various governmental bodies connected with Education and the North East Region. He became National President of the Education Authorities of the United Kingdom.[5]

In 1977 he was Chairman of a Government Committee of Enquiry into Management and Government of Schools, and later he was the author of the Taylor Report on problems in universities.[1]

He was a founder member of the Council of the University of Lancaster and served as Deputy Pro-Chancellor, 1972–95.[1]

He was listed in Who's Who 2009 as a Non-executive Director of Drax Power Ltd. and A Division Holdings, a Consultant to BAE Systems plc; Initial Electronic Security Systems Ltd; and an adviser to Electronic Data Systems Ltd; AES Electric Ltd; United Utilities plc; Experian and Capgemini UK plc.[5] On 29-Jan-2009 Experian agreed with Lord Taylor that he would retire as an adviser to them[6] However, by 30 Jan 2009 he was an Adviser to NPL Estates, Alcatel-Lucent, Canatxx Energy Ventures Limited, BT plc, Gersphere UK and T-Systems, and a Non-executive Director only of A Division Holdings [7]

He is President or patron of various organisations and holds an Hon. LLD from the University of Lancaster, 1996. He's a JP Blackburn, 1960 and former Chairman of the Juvenile Bench. He is a Freeman of Blackburn and of the City of London.[8]

The 'Cash for Influence' scandal[edit]

In late-January 2009 Lord Taylor was one of 4 Labour peers of the realm accused of 'sleaze' by the Sunday Times - it was alleged by the Sunday Times that Taylor proclaimed to two journalists posing as lobbyists that he was ready, willing and able to help a business secure favourable legislation in their sphere of interest in return for a fee.[9]

Taylor was duped, and his behaviour exposed, by the reporter's 'sting' operation. On 20 May the House of Lords considered the report of its Privileges Committee[10] and voted to suspend Lord Taylor and Lord Truscott for six months, the first such action since the 17th century.[11]


External links[edit]