|Prime Minister John Major|
Name John Baron
Preceded by David Mellor
Role Member of Parliament
|Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher|
Party Conservative Party
Preceded by Ian Gow
Succeeded by Gillian Shephard
|Preceded by Kenneth Clarke (Education and Science)|
Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher John Major
Education Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge
Books Neurological differential diagnosis, Ned Kellys Ghost
John Haggitt Charles Patten, Baron Patten, PC (born 17 July 1945) is a former Conservative Member of Parliament for Oxford West and Abingdon.
A Roman Catholic, he was educated by the Jesuits at Wimbledon College before graduating from Sidney Sussex College, Cambridge.
He was first elected for Oxford in 1979, transferring to Oxford West and Abingdon in 1983 after boundary changes divided the seat. He stood down at the 1997 general election. The seat was subsequently won by the Liberal Democrat Evan Harris.
Patten was offered the role as Secretary of State for Northern Ireland by Margaret Thatcher but refused.
Patten served as Secretary of State for Education from 1992 to 1994. He was interviewed at some length by Brian Sherratt in 1994 regarding his role as Secretary of State. While he was Education Secretary, Patten described Birmingham education chief Tim Brighouse as "a madman ... wandering the streets, frightening the children." Brighouse sued, and won substantial damages which were donated to educational charities.
House of Lords
Patten was created a life peer as Baron Patten of Wincanton in the County of Somerset on 17 June 1997.
He is married to the businesswoman Louise Patten and they have one daughter, Mary-Claire.