Jonathan Caine

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Jonathan Caine is a former lobbyist and senior political aide.Since 2010 he has served as special adviser to three Conservative Northern Ireland Secretaries; James Brokenshire, Theresa Villiers and her predecessor Owen Paterson.[1]


From 1991 to 1995, Caine was special adviser to two Secretaries of State for Northern Ireland: Peter Brooke and Sir Patrick Mayhew. Caine then worked as Assistant Director in the Conservative Research Department from 1998 to 2007, specialising in Northern Ireland.[2] Caine spent time as adviser to John Major and chief speechwriter for William Hague.[3]

Bell Pottinger

From March 2007 to December 2009, he was a director at lobbying firm Bell Pottinger Public Affairs (BPPA). His appointment was "a coup for BPPA, providing the agency with a valuable link to Cameron's inner circle".[3]

Special Adviser

On leaving BPPA, Caine rejoined the Conservatives as Chief of Staff to Owen Paterson in the run up to the 2010 general election.[4] He was due to return to BPPA after the election, but instead took up a position as Paterson's special adviser.[5]

In 2008, Irish Times journalist Frank Millar commented that "Cameron's surprise embrace of UUP" would leave the DUP "smarting". He writes:

Jonathan Caine, a former special adviser to secretaries of state Peter (Lord) Brooke and Patrick (Lord) Mayhew, recalls discussing the issues and the difficulties with the young Cameron when they worked together in the Conservative Research Department in the early 1990s. "It was hard to imagine such progress back then," says Caine: "But he has always had a genuine desire to see Northern Ireland politics normalised." Lord Trimble and influential shadow Northern Ireland secretary Owen Paterson are among those who have been working behind the scenes to encourage Cameron's belief that - courtesy of the Belfast and St Andrews Agreements - the opportunity exists now to move beyond "the old issues".[6]

Caine remained at the Northern Ireland Office, when Owen Paterson was replaced by Theresa Villiers as Secretary of State in October 2012.[7]

As a special adviser, Caine was paid an annual salary of £69,266 in 2014. [8]


Contact, Resources, Notes

External resources


  1. Department of Information Services, "Parliamentary Information List", accessed 7 September 2010.
  2. Public Administration Committee, "Supplementary memorandum from Bell Pottinger Public Affairs", accessed 13 September 2010.
  3. 3.0 3.1 David Singleton, "Cameron aide leaves to take BPPA job", PR Week UK, 21 February 2007, accessed 13 September 2010.
  4. Bell Pottinger Public Affairs, "Jonathan Caine appointed chief of staff to shadow Northern Ireland secretary Owen Paterson", 13 November 2009, accessed 13 September 2010.
  5. Ian Hall, "'PEOPLE MOVES' - July 2010 edition ", Public Affairs News, 02.07.10, accessed 13 September 2010.
  6. Frank Millar, "Cameron's surprise embrace of UUP shows fresh Tory thinking on North", The Irish Times, 25 July 2008, accessed 13 September 2010.
  7. Matthew Honeyman, The latest special adviser reshuffle, Constitution Unit Blog, 23 October 2012.
  8. Special advisers in post, 30 November 2014 GOV.UK, accessed 30 April 2015.