Tuesday, December 13, 2016


We knew back at the end of October that the interview panel for the new BBC Chairman would be led by Public Appointments Assessor and Retired Navy Bloke Sir Peter Spencer, KCB.

Now we have his wingmen (and women). Sue Owen (Lady Eleanor Holles and Newnham) is a Career Civil Servant of 27 years standing and currently Permanent Secretary at the DCMS, where, presumably, she's been advising Karen Bradley on sensitive matters such as the defenestration of Rona Fairhead from the BBC and the blocking of Althea Efunshile at C4.

Dame Colette Bowe, Liverpool supporter, one-time life model and fan of using the licence fee to provide more contestable funding, will also be there, as former chair of Ofcom.

And making up the quartet of inquisitors will be Lord Janvrin, who may be representing the interests of one of the BBC's most influential consumers, Her Maj. As Robin (later Sir Robin) Janvrin, he served The Queen in various roles for 20 years, and is now a Permanent Lord in Waiting. (In the Stephen Frears 2006 film, The Queen, he was played by Roger Allam). As a crossbencher in the Lords, he is a member of the Intelligence and Security Committee of Parliament

Lord Janvrin can discuss boats with Sir Peter in the gaps between candidates (heaven forfend they see each other); he signed up for the Navy at 18 from Marlborough, thence to the Britannia Naval College and Brasenose, Oxford.

Lord Janvrin is married to Isabelle de Boissonneaux de Chevigny.

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