Ed Llewellyn

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Ed Llewellyn

Lord Ed Llewellyn served as chief of staff to the former UK prime minister David Cameron.[1] He had served Cameron since 2005. [2] He played an eminent role in managing Cameron's EU renegotiations in late 2015 to early 2016.[3]

For his chief of staff role, Llewellyn earned £140,000 a year. [4]

Llewellyn was awarded a peerage under Cameron's honours list in July 2016. [5]

In September 2016, he was appointed Britain's ambassador to France, for which he earns an annual salary of £130,000. [6] He is expected to play a central role in Britain's Brexit negotiations.


Nicknamed "Steady Eddie", Llewellyn attended both Eton and Oxford with Cameron. During the period of Conservative opposition, he was an adviser to Chris Patten (working for him during the 1997 handover of Hong Kong from the UK to China) and worked alongside Paddy Ashdown in Bosnia.[7]

Llewellyn has worked with Cameron for many years, initially as colleagues at the Conservative Central Office after graduation and thus liaising with one another during the 1992 general election. [2]

In May 2010 The Spectator tipped Cameron's chief of staff Llewellyn to be "the new power broker" and "one of the most influential people in Downing Street these next few years". In addition to his good relations with the Liberal Democrats - having been sidekick to Ashdown and also good friends with Nick Clegg's wife, Miriam Gonzalez Durantez, during his time in Brussels - he "has extensive links across government". For example, he has twice worked alongside National Security Adviser Peter Ricketts (in Hong Kong and Bosnia).[8]

Phone hacking investigation

In an email to Llewellyn on 10 September 2010, Assistant Metropolitan Police Commissioner John Yates offered to brief the Prime Minister on his examination of the News of the World phone hacking investigation. Llewellyn responded:

On the other matters that have caught your attention this week, assuming we are thinking of the same thing, I am sure you will understand that we will want to be able to be entirely clear, for your sake and ours, that we have not been in contact with you about this subject.
So I don't think it would really be appropriate for the PM, or anyone else at No 10, to discuss this issue with you, and would be grateful if it were not raised please.[9]

Tory cronyism

Llewellyn's inclusion on Cameron's honours list, amongst many other former political and personal aides, sparked accusations of cronyism and was seen as an attempt by the Conservatives to boost the number of Tory peers in the House of Lords. The list was branded by his former policy adviser Steve Hilton as a the symptom of a 'corrupt and decaying democracy'. [10]

Llewellyn's subsequent appointment as French ambassador raised further concerns, after the The Daily Mail reported in June 2014 that David Cameron had long promised his old school friend an ambassadorship as a ‘thank you’ for his loyalty. [11] His appointment is highly unusual given he is serving Conservative peer, he said however that he would not vote or speak in the Second chamber, nor draw any allowances. [12]

Contact, Resources, Notes



  1. Department of Information Services, " Parliamentary Information List", accessed 07.09.10
  2. 2.0 2.1 Andy McSmith Ed Llewellyn: The old school chum in trouble for not communicating The Independent, 20 July 2011, accessed 15 October 2014.
  3. Frances Perraudin Sunday Times columnist Camilla Cavendish to head No 10 policy unit Guardian, 21 May 2015, accessed 26 May 2015.
  4. Special advisers in post, 30 November 2014 GOV.UK, accessed 28 April 2015
  5. Christopher Hope and Steven Swinford, Number 10 aides Ed Llewellyn and Craig Oliver to top 'Dave's cronies' resignation honours list, The Telegraph, 12 July 2016, accessed 6 February 2017.
  6. Jason Groves, Cameron crony's our new man in Paris: Dave's former chief of staff is made Britain's ambassador to France, Daily Mail, 23 September 2016, accessed 6 February 2017.
  7. Channel 4, "Hung parliament: who are the dealmakers?", accessed 07.09.10
  8. James Forsyth, "The new power broker", The Spectator, 12.05.10, accessed 07.09.10
  9. Helene Mulholland and Matthew Taylor, Phone hacking: emails show Cameron aide 'stopped' briefing, guardian.co.uk, 19 July 2011.
  10. Sam Rkaina, Full list of David Cameron 'crony' honours revealed as George Osborne tops awards, Mirror, 4 August 2016, accessed 6 February 2017.
  11. Cameron lines up top job for Eton friend Ed: Prime Minister promises plum diplomatic role for old school chum Daily Mail, 29 June 2014, accessed 28 April 2015
  12. Laura Hughes and Christopher Hope, David Cameron's former chief of staff made French Ambassador just weeks after receiving a peerage, The Telegraph, 23 September 2016, accessed 6 February 2017.