The Rt Hon. the Lord Patten has been a Conservative Life peer sitting in the House of Lords since 1997. He previously sat in the House of Commons as MP for Oxford West & Abingdon and Oxford.
Lord Patten has held the positions, in government, of Secretary of State for Education and Science (1992 to 1994), Minister of State (Home Office) (1987 to 1992), Minister of State (Department of Environment) (Housing) (1985 to 1987), Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Department of Health and Social Security) (1983 to 1985), Parliamentary Under-Secretary (Northern Ireland Office) (1981 to 1983).
Before entering politics, Lord Patten was an academic geographer, and was a tutorial fellow at Hertford College, Oxford and university lecturer in Geography.