Lord Pendry (Thomas Pendry) is a British Labour politician who has been in the UK House of Lords since July 2001.
Relationship with the Tobacco Industry
Accepted Hospitality from Imperial Tobacco
In 2005, 2008, and 2012, Lord Pendry accepted tickets to Wimbledon, courtesy of Imperial Tobacco. When asked by the Manchester Evening News whether accepting hospitality from a tobacco company conflicted with his roles as president of the Football Foundation and sports advisor to Tameside Council Sports Trust, Lord Pendry was quoted as saying that “It’s a point of view but it is not something that bothers me. I don’t see it as a clash at all. I am not a smoker and my work in the field of sport is completely separate”.
Imperial is not the only tobacco company that has provided hospitality to UK politicians. For an overview of UK Members of Parliament (MPs) and peers who have taken hospitality from Imperial Tobacco and other tobacco companies, go to Tobacco Industry Hospitality for UK Politicians.
Took Hospitality from UK Tobacco Manufacturer’s Association
Despite claiming he was not a smoker, Lord Pendry’s 2014 entry in the Register of Lords’ Interests, shows that he was a member of the Lords and Commons Cigar Club, and in that capacity, was the recipient of hospitality worth more than £140, provided by the Tobacco Manufacturers' Association.
Lord Pendry’s acceptance of tobacco industry hospitality contravenes the World Health Organization’s Framework Convention on Tobacco Control (WHO FCTC), to which the UK has been a Party to since December 2004. Guidelines for implementation of Article 5.3 of the Treaty, recommend that Parties “should interact with the tobacco industry only when and to the extent strictly necessary to enable them to effectively regulate the tobacco industry and tobacco products”.
Opposed Tobacco Control Measures in UK
Tried to Weaken Indoor Smoking Ban
In 2006, Lord Pendry unsuccessfully tried to exempt private members’ clubs from the smoking ban in England. A Guardian commentary of 16 June 2006 detailed how Lord Pendry had sent letters to his fellow peers, asking them to support his amendment that would allow private clubs to decide themselves if they would ban smoking. The franking on the envelopes revealed that the postage had been paid by the TMA. In a response to The Guardian Lord Pendry said, “I couldn’t get a secretary to do it, so they offered”.
- Tobacco Industry Hospitality for UK Politicians
- Imperial Tobacco
- Tobacco Manufacturers' Association
- Framework Convention on Tobacco Control
Profile of Lord Pendry on UK Parliament website.
- MPs, Lords & Offices: Lord Pendry, UK Parliament website, undated, accessed November 2017
- House of Lords Publications, Register of Lords’ Interests as Amended to Show Position on 16 July 2007, 16 July 2007, accessed November 2017
- House of Lords Publications, Register of Lords’ Interests as Amended to Show Position on 23 July 2009, 23 July 2009, accessed November 2017
- Peer’s tobacco Wimbledon tickets, Manchester Evening News, 20 April 2010, accessed November 2017
- House of Commons Publications, Register of Lords’ Interests 4 December 2014 report, 4 December 2014, accessed November 2017
- United Nations Treaty Collection, WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, Geneva, 21 May 2003, undated, accessed November 2017
- World Health Organization, Guidelines for implementation of Article 5.3 of the WHO Framework Convention on Tobacco Control, 2008, accessed November 2017
- J. Henley, Comment & Debate: Diary, The Guardian Final Edition, 16 June 2006