The Bow Group is the world’s oldest conservative think tank with 70 years steeped in rich conservative history and notable individuals.
The BOW GROUP
Meet the current leadership behind the oldest conservative think-tank
Research Fellow for Justice
Senior Research Fellow
Research Fellow for Sexual Orientation & Gender Identity
Research Fellow for Judaeo-Christian Western Civilisation
Research Fellow for The Union
Research Fellow for Migration
Honorary Senior Patron & Founder
Baron Howe of Aberavon was Margaret Thatcher’s longest-serving Cabinet minister, successively holding the posts of Chancellor of the Exchequer, Foreign Secretary, and finally Leader of the House of Commons and Deputy Prime Minister.
A pupil of the Bridgend Preparatory School, Bryntirion, he then attended Abberley Hall School, Worcestershire and Winchester College. He then did National Service as a Lieutenant with the Royal Corps of Signals in East Africa, by his own account giving political lectures in Swahili about how Africans should avoid communism and remain loyal to “Bwana Kingy George”. Having declined an offer to remain in the army as a captain, he went up to Trinity Hall, Cambridge, where he read Law and was chairman of the Cambridge University Conservative Association, and on the committee of the Cambridge Union Society. He was called to the Bar in 1952 and was made a QC in 1965.
He was a founder of the Bow Group and became chairman in 1956, and edited the group’s Crossbow magazine.
He was MP for Bebington between 1964 and 1966, then Reigate from 1970 – 1974, before East Surrey 1974 – 1992.
Lord Howe passed away on October 9th 2015.
Honorary Senior Patron
Roger Scruton was one of the world’s leading conservative philosophers. He authored over thirty books, including Art and Imagination (1974), The Meaning of Conservatism (1980), Sexual Desire (1986), The Philosopher on Dover Beach (1990), The Aesthetics of Music (1997), Beauty (2009), How to Think Seriously About the Planet: The Case for an Environmental Conservatism (2012), and Our Church (2012). Scruton has also wrote two novels and a number of general textbooks on philosophy and culture, and composed two operas.
Scruton was a lecturer and professor of aesthetics at Birkbeck College, London, from 1971 to 1992. Since 1992, he has held part-time positions at Boston University, the American Enterprise Institute in Washington, D.C., and the University of St Andrews. In 1982 he helped found The Salisbury Review, a conservative political journal, which he edited for 18 years, and he founded the Claridge Press in 1987.
Outside his career as a philosopher and writer, Scruton was involved in the establishment of underground universities and academic networks in Soviet-controlled Central Europe during the Cold War, and he has received a number of awards for his work in this area.
Sir Roger Scruton passed away on the 12th of January 2020.
The Rt Hon Lord Tebbit of Chingford was elected MP for Epping in 1970 and then for Chingford in February 1974.
As close and loyal friend of Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher, he served in the Cabinet from 1981 to 1987 as Secretary of State for Employment (1981–83), Secretary of State for Trade and Industry (1983–85), Chancellor of the Duchy of Lancaster (1985–87) and Chairman of the Conservative Party (1985–87).
Former Bow Group chairman Baron Lamont of Lerwick was Conservative MP for Kingston-upon-Thames, although he is perhaps best known for his period serving as Chancellor of the Exchequer, from 1990 until 1993, during which time he famously declared, “I remain unconvinced that the potential benefits of a single currency are as great as its supporters allege”. He was created a life peer in 1998.
John Redwood MP was a trusted confidant of Baroness Thatcher and later became her Chief Policy Advisor at Number 10. He has been Member of Parliament for Wokingham since 1987, having also served as Minister for Corporate Affairs (1989 -1992); Minister of State for Local Government (1992 – 1993) and Secretary of State for Wales (1993 – 1995)
John was educated Kent College, Canterbury and gained a degree at Magdalen College, Oxford and a DPhil from St Antony’s College, Oxford. He was later awarded Distinguished Fellowship from All Souls College, Oxford. He was an Oxfordshire County Councillor between 1973 and 1977, the youngest ever at the age of 21 when elected.
In addition to being a member of the Parliamentary Board, John Redwood MP was invited to become a Patron of the Bow Group in recognition of his commitment to conservative principles.
Born in Woolwich in 1958, Sir John Hayes was educated at Colfe’s Grammar School and the University of Nottingham BA (Hons) PGCE. First elected as the MP for South Holland and The Deepings in 1997, he has been re-elected at six subsequent general elections.
From 1999, Sir John held a wide variety of Opposition frontbench roles, including as a member of the Shadow Cabinet. He was a speechwriter for the Leader of the Opposition, prior to his appointment as Minister of State for Further Education, Skills and Lifelong Learning following the General Election in May 2010.
In September 2012 Sir John was appointed Minister of State for Energy, and in March 2013 he became Minister of State at the Cabinet Office and Senior Parliamentary Adviser to the Prime Minister, attending the Cabinet. He joined the Privy Council in 2013. In July 2014, Sir John was appointed Minister of State at the Department for Transport. In May 2015 he became Minister for Security at the Home Office before returning to the Department for Transport in July 2016 to January 2018. Following his appointment as CBE in 2016 he was made a Knight Bachelor by Her Majesty the Queen two years later.
In recognition of distinguished professional contribution to vocational education, he was granted fellowship of the Chartered Institution for Further Education in 2017, Fellowship of the City and Guilds of London Institute in 2018 and awarded an honorary doctorate from the University of Bolton in 2019. In 2020, he became a professor at the University of Bolton, commissioned to create a new post graduate course in Government, Opposition and Parliamentary studies.
Also in 2020, he was appointed to Parliament’s Security and Intelligence Committee, responsible for the oversight and scrutiny of the Secret Intelligence Service (MI6), the Security Service (MI5) and Government Communications Headquarters (GCHQ).
Sir John is also Chairman of the Common Sense Group, a caucus of MPs and Lords who champion cultural conservatism.
Ann Noreen Widdecombe, PC DSG is a former British Conservative Party politician. She is a Privy Councillor and was the Member of Parliament for Maidstone from 1987 to 1997 and for Maidstone and The Weald from 1997 to 2010. She is a social conservative and a member of the Conservative Christian Fellowship. She retired from politics at the 2010 general election. Since 2002 she has also made numerous television and radio appearances, including as a television presenter. She is a convert from Anglicanism to Roman Catholicism.
She has been a member of the Bow Group since the 1960s.
William “Bill” Cash has been a Conservative Member of Parliament since 1984 and has represented the Stone constituency since 1997.
Bill was born in London on 10 May 1940 and grew up in Sheffield. He was educated at Stonyhurst College and Lincoln College, Oxford where he read History. After qualifying as a solicitor in 1967, he practised constitutional and administrative law.
In May 1984, he was elected as MP for Stafford where he remained until he was elected to the newly created constituency of Stone in 1997, being re-elected in 2001 and 2005. He was Shadow Attorney General and Shadow Secretary of State for Constitutional Affairs between 2001 to 2003.
The leader of the Maastricht Rebellion during the 1990s, Bill was voted Parliamentary Campaigner of the Year for 1991. He is currently a member of the European Scrutiny Committee and Chairman and founder of the European Foundation think tank.
He has been a member of the Bow Group since 1960.
John O’Sullivan, CBE is a British conservative political commentator and journalist. During the 1980s, he was a senior policy writer and speechwriter in 10 Downing Street for Margaret Thatcher when she was British prime minister and remained close to her up to her death. O’Sullivan served from 2008–2012 as vice-president and executive editor of Radio Free Europe/Radio Liberty. He is currently president of the Danube Institute and editor of the Australian monthly magazine Quadrant. He is also a member of the board of advisors for the Global Panel Foundation, a respected NGO that works behind the scenes in crisis areas around the world.
He is known for “O’Sullivan’s First Law” (O’Sullivan’s Law): “All organizations that are not actually right-wing will over time become left-wing”.
Dr David Starkey is one of the United Kingdom’s most celebrated constitutional historians and academics.
He has published over 20 books, and as a historian and conservative commentator Dr Starkey regularly appears in national and international media.
Niranjan Joseph De Silva Deva Aditya, FRSA, DL (born 11 May 1948), commonly known as Nirj Deva, is a British politician. A member of the Conservative Party, he has been a Member of the European Parliament representing South East England since 1999. He was previously a Member of Parliament (MP) in the British House of Commons from 1992 to 1997, representing the constituency of Brentford and Isleworth.
Deva was born in Sri Lanka into a politically active family, and was raised in Britain. He was only the Fifth Asian-born person to be elected a Member of the House of Commons, and was the Second Asian-born person to be elected as a Conservative member of the European Parliament.
He served as Chairman of the Bow Group in 1981.
Steven Woolfe MEP has served as a Member of the European Parliament for the North West England region since the 2014 European election.
Woolfe was born in Moss Side in Manchester and studied law at Aberystwyth University, after which he worked as a barrister. In 2011 he was elected to UKIP’s National Executive Committee. He contested Stockport as the UKIP candidate in the 2015 general election.
Andrew Jones MP
Alastair Ross Goobey
Alok Sharma MP
Anthony Coombs MP
Sir Anthony Meyer
Bill Cash MP
Caroline Spelman MP
Dr Charles Tannock MEP
Charlotte Leslie MP
Chris Grayling MP
Sir Christopher Bland
Christopher Jackson Hon. MEP
Chris Skidmore MP
David Campbell-Bannerman MEP
Damian Collins MP
Damian Hinds MP
Daniel Hannan MEP
The Rt. Hon. David Heathcoat Amory
Sir Edward du Cann
Edward Leigh MP
Geoffrey Clifton-Brown MP
Sir Geoffrey Pattie
Sir George Gardiner
James Elles MEP
The Rt. Hon. Jeremy Hunt MP
Colonel John Blashford-Snell
John Penrose MP
Julian Brazier MP
Sir Julian Critchley
Justine Greening MP
The Rt. Hon. Kenneth Clarke QCMP
Kwasi Kwarteng MP
Lord Brittan QC PC
Baroness Chalker PC
Sir Marcus Fox
Lord Heseltine PC
Lord Howard QC PC
The Rt. Hon. Michael Portillo
Dr. Nigel Forman
Lord Fowler PC
Professor Sir Alan Walters
Lord Luce KG PC
Richard Ottaway MP
Lord Freeman PC
Sam Gyimah MP
The Rt. Hon. Sir Timothy Sainsbury
The Rt. Hon. Sir Timothy Raison
Sir Timothy Hoare
Tobias Ellwood MP
Tony Baldry MP
Sir Anthony Durant
Professor Vernon Bogdanor
Lord Lamont PC
Lord St John-Stevas PC
Sir Peter Bottomley MP
The Rt. Hon. Peter Lilley MP
Peter Luff MP
Sir Peter Viggers
Sir John Redwood
Dr David Starkey