The Rt Hon The Lord Patten of Barnes, CH, PC. Commonly known as Chris Patten, born in Cleveleys, Lancashire, England on 12 May 1944. is a British Politician, Conservative Life peer, who has sat under the title in the Lords since 2005. He was educated at St Benedict’s School, Ealing and Balliol College, Oxford. He won a Coolidge Travelling Scholarship to the USA in 1965.
Chairman of Conservative Party from 1990 – 1992. And the 28th, the last Governor of Hong Kong from 1992 – 1997. He was given an Official Chinese name, Pang Ding-hong (Chinese : 彭定康), the name based on the words meaning “stability” and “calm, joyous, healthy“. He was a former European Commissioner of United Kingdom for external affairs from 1999 – 2004. He has been the Chancellor of University of Oxford since 2003.
House of Lords, United Kingdom : 2005 – Current
Lord Patten of Barnes is a Life peer, Conservative member who has set under the title in the House of Lords, United Kingdom since 19 January 2005. His full title is The Rt Hon The Lord Patten of Barnes, CH, PC.
Governor of Hong Kong : 1992 – 1997
Within the last five years of British rule as a Governor, leading up to the handover of Hong Kong, Patten encouraged the expansion of Hong Kong’s social welfare systems, striving to reconcile the basic rights and freedom, and given Hong Kong the own political culture with which to endure in the process over 6 million people, with the unpredictable movements of Beijing.
He left the city with Prince Charles, on HMY Britannia (British Royal Yacht) after the handover of Hong Kong ceremony. Patten was noted in tears throughout the day, after his last speech at HMS Tamar (Base of British Royal Navy in Hong Kong from 1897 to 1997). He has commented that, his governorship of Hong Kong, was a happy time for him personally.
Member of Parliament (UK), Bath : 1979–1992
Patten joined the Conservative Research Department in 1966. He was seconded to the Cabinet Office in 1970, was a personal assistant, political secretary to Lord Carrington and Lord Whitelaw, when they were Chairmen of the Conservative Party from 1972-1974.
He was appointed and became the youngest Director of the Conservative Research Department in 1974 until 1979.
He was elected as the Member of Parliament, House of Common for Bath in 1979, and served until 1992.
2003 – Current : Chancellor of the University of Oxford
Patten was elected Chancellor of the University of Oxford in 2003 and in position currently.
2011 – 2014 : Chairman of the BBC Trust
Patten was advised by coalition government of the Conservative and Liberal Democrat, which was led by former Prime Minister David Cameron. Patten was appointed as Chairman of the BBC Trust, he took on his place on 1 May 2011, replace of Sir Michael Lyons.
Patten resigned as BBC Trust Chairman to the Secretary of State in 2014 due to the health reasons, according to his heart bypass surgery was held in the same year.
1999 – 2009 : Chancellor of Newcastle University
Patten was elected Chancellor of Newcastle University in 1999 until 2009.
1999 – 2004 : European Commissioner of United Kingdom
Patten was appointed to the European Commission as Commissioner for External Relations, one of two members of UK. He was responsible for co-operation programmes and EU’s development. He held the position from 2000 until 2004.
1998 – 1999 : Independent Commission on Policing, Northern Ireland
Patten was held the position of Independent Commission of Policing for Northern Ireland from 1998 until 1999. Commonly known as Patten Commission at that time, as it is part of the Belfast Agreement, and established in 1998.
The Patten Commission produced the full policing report, entitled A New Beginning: Policing in Northern Ireland in 1999, commonly known as the Patten Report, contained 133 pages and practical recommendations.
This report led to the renaming of the Royal Ulster Constabulary as the Police Service of Northern Ireland.
Commander of the Legion of Honour
Her Majesty’s Most Honourable Privy Council
The Most Venerable Order of the Hospital of St John of Jerusalem
University of Bath : Hon. Doctor of Laws
Massey College, University of Toronto : Hon. Fellow
University of Trinity College, Toronto : Hon. Doctor of Sacred Letters
University of Ulster : Hon. Doctor of Letters
South East European University : Doctor Honoris Causa
Lord Patten married Lavender Thornton on September 1971. Lavender is a barrister. They have three daughters, Kate (1973), Laura (1974) and Alice (1979).
He is a Roman Catholic.
The Tablet (International Catholic reviews weekly publication in London) named him one of Britain’s most influential Roman Catholics in 2010.
His interests are gardening and tennis.
He is a big fan of Hong Kong style egg tart, as a famously fan of it.