Lord Ashcroft, KCMG PC, is an international businessman, author and philanthropist. He has many, varied business interests with significant investments and participation in both public and private companies in the United Kingdom, United States and the Caribbean.
He was Deputy Chairman of the Conservative Party in the UK from December 2005 to September 2010. In May 2011 he was appointed as lead adviser to the Ministry of Defence for the strategic review military bases in Cyprus. In September 2012 he was appointed a member of the Privy Council and was made the Government's Special Representative for Veterans' Transition, working with all departments to ensure military personnel receive the support they need when making the transition to civilian life. In November 2012 he was appointed to the Board of the Imperial War Museum until November 2016. He is also Treasurer of the International Democratic Union.
In 2012, with the approval of the MOD, Lord Ashcroft published The Armed Forces & Society, a study of the relationship between the public and the military, which included the biggest ever independent survey of serving Forces personnel.
Alongside his business acumen, Lord Ashcroft also has numerous altruistic endeavours that focus on his areas of particular interest, notably crime prevention, education and military history.
Lord Ashcroft is the founder and Chairman of the Board of Trustees of Crimestoppers, Vice Patron of the Intelligence Corps Museum, a Trustee of the Imperial War Museum Foundation Ltd, a Trustee and President of the West India Committee, Chairman of the Trustees of Ashcroft Technology Academy and Chancellor of Anglia Ruskin University in the UK. He is also a Trustee of the Cleveland Clinic in the US.
Lord Ashcroft has a life-long interest in bravery and gallantry medals. In 1986, he started collecting Victoria Cross medals (VCs), an interest which eventually led to the creation of largest collection of VCs in the world. There are now more than 180 medals in the collection, which is estimated to be worth some £30 million. In the autumn of 2010, the collection went on public display for the first time at the Imperial War Museum (IWM) in London. The new Lord Ashcroft Gallery, paid for by a £5 million donation from the Conservative peer, also exhibits VCs and George Cross medals already in the care of the IWM.
Lord Ashcroft is a principal benefactor to the Bomber Command Memorial, donating £1 million in support.
Lord Ashcroft has written seven books:
- Smell The Coffee – A wake-up call for the Conservative Party
- Minority Verdict – The Conservative Party, the voters and the 2010 election
- Dirty Politics Dirty Times
- Victoria Cross Heroes
- Special Forces Heroes
- George Cross Heroes
- Heroes of the Skies
Lord Ashcroft’s latest book “Heroes of the Skies” was published by Headline on 13 September 2012.
Lord Ashcroft’s books on gallantry have been widely acclaimed and led to his being invited to address the Cheltenham Literary Festival on the subject in 2008, 2009 and 2012.
The author's royalties from each of his books on gallantry have been donated to military charities.
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