Tuesday, May 5, 2015


I suspect Lord Patten of Barnes, former Chairman of the Conservative Party and of the BBC, is still an election junkie. But when you're fast approaching your 71st birthday, you might think about avoiding late nights.

So Chris is in San Francisco, for a couple of well-timed events. On the 7th he's giving a lecture at Berkeley on Anglo-American relations - but it handily finishes by 6pm Pacific Time, which means he's free to catch up with the first declarations, at around 2am BST, yet in daylight hours with a nice glass of Californian Red.

Then the next day, he imparts his view of the aftermath, at a UK Election Wrap-Up lunch, at the University's Institute of Government Studies.

  • All this current bullying of the BBC during the campaign will resonate with Lord Patten. In the run-up to the 1992 John Major General Election, Chris was party chairman, and exhorted the Tory faithful to "jam the switchboards" of the BBC with complaints, particularly about coverage of the NHS. There were extended behind-the-scenes rows between Patten, John Birt and one Tony Hall, written up in this scholarly analysis.  

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