The House of Lords just welcomed a woman linked to a bullying scandal that is tearing the Tory Party apart

Emma PiddingparliamentliveThe introduction to the House of Lords is a formal ceremony where new Peers are introduced to existing members while wearing their ermine robes.

A woman linked to a bullying scandal in the Conservative party that led to the suspension of a senior party member in September was introduced to the House of Lords on Tuesday.

Emma Pidding, now titled Baroness Pidding of Amersham, was chair of the Tory party’s RoadTrip campaign in 2015, which bussed young Tory party activists around the country to canvass voters. The organisation was headed by a man named Mark Clarke.

Clarke was suspended from the Conservative Party after being accused of bullying a young Tory activist named Elliott Johnson, who committed suicide in September. Johnson was allegedly threatened by Clarke on at least two occasions before his death. On the second occasion, Johnson captured on tape Clarke appearing to blackmail him because the young activist complained to the Conservative Party after the first altercation.

Baroness Pidding has long been a close supporter of Clarke and as recently as July arranged for him to be publically feted by Prime Minister David Cameron at the Conservative National Convention.

Clarke is now being investigated by the Conservative Party as part of a “disciplinary inquiry.”

Business Insider UK has reached out to the party for comment about Pidding’s introduction. 

Mark clarke david cameronYouTubeDavid Cameron congratulates Mark Clarke

Since Johnson’s suicide, two women who were part of the RoadTrip campaign have alleged that Clarke “mentally abused” them and pressured them for sex, the Daily Mail reports.

Business Insider UK has spoken to multiple Conservative Party members who allege it was common knowledge within the party that married Clarke used the RoadTrip project to target young women for sex.

Mark clarke emma piddingTwitterBaroness Pidding celebrating her elevation to the House of Lords with Mark Clarke in September

In addition, the father of Elliot Johnson, Ray Johnson, wrote to Tory Party Chairman Lord Feldman earlier this week, alleging that young activists in the Tory party claim Baroness Pidding leaked to Clarke the names of RoadTrip members who complained in confidence about Clarke’s behaviour to Conservative Campaign Headquarters.

You can read the full letter, which was published on political blog thebluegorilla, below:

Ray Johnson Damning Letter Over Baroness Pidding

Meanwhile, Baroness Pidding continues to defend Clarke.

Her introduction alongside the Clarke allegations will likely raise questions about the vetting process Pidding was subjected to before she was made a Baroness.


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