Sir Peter looks to British ownership of newspapers in wake of Leveson inquiry

Sir Peter Tapsell.
Sir Peter Tapsell.

Louth and Horncastle’s MP Sir Peter Tapsell has questioned whether British-only ownership of national newspapers is the way forward after the Leveson inquiry.

The Father of the House of Commons, speaking in the house on Thursday in the wake of the inquiry’s findings, said some owners of national papers have been ‘bad man’ and that ‘sometimes foreigners with an ingrained hostility towards Britain, and their editors know that they can only keep their jobs by achieving the required levels of readership and advertising revenue by populist sensationalism, however immoral’.

“Should ownership of British newspapers be confined to British nationals who are judged to be fit and proper for that role, as with television?” He asked.

Prime Minister David Cameron, replied: “The report goes into enormous detail about the history and ownership of the press. Part of one of the volumes goes into immense detail, which my right hon. Friend can study, and perhaps that is the best answer to him.

“This point was raised by the Leader of the Opposition. Lord Justice Leveson does address concerns about plurality and media ownership and does say we need to make sure there is more plurality than would otherwise be guaranteed simply by competition policy.

“That is important, because we want to have not just a vigorous press, but a press that is in different—in wide—ownership as well.”