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'Downton Abbey' writer offered peerage

By
Julian Fellowes

© WENN

Downton Abbey writer Julian Fellowes and former BBC chairman Michael Grade are among the 54 public figures to have been made working peers in the House of Lords.

Actor, director and Oscar-winning screenwriter Fellowes has become a Conservative peer in recognition of his long and distinguished career in TV and film.

As reported earlier today, Grade has also taken the Conservative whip, after he supported David Cameron before the general election in May. He is also a member of the Tory party.

Grade, the nephew of showbiz star Sir Lew Grade, is regarded as one of the leading figures in the broadcasting industry after a career spanning six decades, including time spent as a journalist, TV producer and senior manager at ITV, the BBC and Channel 4.

Other notable names to become Tory peers include the lawyer Fiona Shackleton, who famously represented Sir Paul McCartney during his divorce from Heather Mills.

The Labour benches will joined by journalist and TV presenter Dame Joan Bakewell, once described by the writer and performer Frank Muir as "the thinking man's crumpet".

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