First out gay Tory peer joins House of Lords

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Guy Black, the former director of the Press Complaints Commission, took his seat in the House of Lords yesterday.

The 45-year-old is believed to be the first openly gay Tory peer.

Now Lord Black of Brentwood, he has been in a civil partnership with Mark Bolland since 2006.

He began his political career in the Conservative party’s research department, becoming a special adviser to John Wakeham when he was energy minister.

Under Michael Howard’s leadership, he was the Conservative Party’s director of communications, moving to become the executive director of Telegraph Media Group in 2005.

In May, when his appointment was announced, Lord Black said: “I am deeply honoured to have been granted a peerage. I greatly look forward to supporting the prime minister and the coalition government in the House of Lords.”

He was one of three new peers taking their seats in the Lords yesterday, joining fellow Tory Angela Browning and Labour’s Helen Liddell.

Baroness Browning, 63, became the MP for Tiverton in 1992 and was the MP for Tiverton and Honiton between 1997 and this year, when she stood down.

Baroness Liddell of Coatdyke, 59, is a former Scottish secretary and was High Commissioner to Australia from 2005 to 2009.