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Derek Laud

Derek Laud in 2007 at Cape Town, SA,
Born Derek George Henry Laud
August 9, 1964(1964-08-09)
London, UK
Residence London, UK
Ethnicity British African-Caribbean
Citizenship United Kingdom
Occupation Speechwriter, Lobbyist
Known for Big Brother
Political party Conservatives
Religious beliefs Christian

Derek George Henry Laud (born August 9, 1964, in Battersea, London) was a British political lobbyist and former Conservative parliamentary candidate, who achieved celebrity status during his run as a contestant in the sixth (2005) series of the UK Big Brother TV show.

Contents

Early career

Laud, who is openly gay, gained some notability as the only black member of the Conservative Monday Club, for whom he produced, in October 1984, a Policy Paper entitled The Law, Order and Race Relations, under the auspices of the Club's Immigration and Race Relations Committee. He subsequently became one of the researchers working for Conservative Members of Parliament in the mid-1980s. He unsuccessfully fought a seat in Wandsworth council's Graveney ward in May 1986, and won 937 votes.

During his career, Laud has contributed to speeches for several well-known Conservatives including, it is said, Margaret Thatcher, Michael Heseltine and even Alan Clark. He is briefly mentioned in both John Major's autobiography and Alan Clark's diaries. Moving on from Westminster, he was employed in the City of London in equity finance. He established a political lobbying company, Ludgate Laud, in the early 1990s. As a parliamentary lobbyist, Derek Laud was mentioned in the House of Commons by Labour MP Martin Linton in his maiden parliamentary speech.[1]

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Parliamentary candidacy

In the 1997 General Election, Laud was selected as Conservative candidate for the seat of Tottenham, a constituency with a very large non-white population (and which has been represented by black Labour MPs since 1987), but stepped down shortly before the election citing "business reasons". According to the BBC [2] and the Observer [3] he withdrew "after being convicted of drink-driving in the US". The Observer also implicated him for being in involved in the sale of honours during the last Conservative government.

Subsequent activities

Derek Laud had long been an enthusiastic fox hunter, and in 1999, he became the Master of Foxhounds for the New Forest Hunt.

Laud has a wide circle of friends in the Conservative Party. In 2001, he provided an alibi[4] for his friends Neil and Christine Hamilton when they were falsely accused by Nadine Milroy-Sloan of sexual assault.[5] (Ms Milroy-Sloan was sentenced to three years imprisonment.)

Big Brother

Laud's background and audition videos for Big Brother showed him with his friend, British ex-boxer and celebrity, Chris Eubank.

Laud was the tenth person to be evicted from the Big Brother House after losing in a head-to-head with Eugene Sully.

After Big Brother

Laud partnered Edwina Currie on a charity edition of Who Wants to Be a Millionaire? on 17 September 2005.

During the Conservative Party conference in October 2005, he commented that most politicians (with one exception) would not succeed on "Big Brother", saying "Good looks are very important and David Cameron is very attractive."[6]

Laud appeared on BBC's Question Time which was held in Newbury, Berkshire in November 2005. Derek's political views, which some characterise as populist right-wing, tended to polarise people for or against him. Laud said, speaking in favour of longer pub opening hours: 'I think as adults - and responsible adults at that - we should be able to determine that (when to drink) for ourselves. ... I think that essentially what we've got to be doing here is to encourage people to take responsibilities for themselves and get the state out of our private lives.' About education in Britain he said: '44,000 people this year at 16 years old left school without a single GCSE - that is a national disaster. So where is Blair's radicalism? He will fall short of his place in history if he doesn't live up to the radicalism of Asquith in 1908 and Clement Attlee in 1945 and Thatcher in 1979 if he doesn't get this right. He has to take on these people who've got this taboo about the private sector having any part in education, and i deplore it.'

Graham Norton, on The Bigger Picture, asked his audience to take a good look at Mr Laud "because you'll probably never meet another black gay Tory."

Recently, he also appeared on Webcameron declaring that he would like to stand for election in the up coming general election. He was also seen dining with the Hamiltons on Hell's Kitchen in September 2007.

Derek appeared on a pilot of a new TV comedy show, "U Kno Wot I Mean?" The show has yet to be aired.

Return to politics

Derek Laud has recently expressed an interest to return to politics in light of the MP's expense scandal. He has also began to blog on the Telegraph.

See also

References

External links


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