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Last Updated: Wednesday, 5 May, 2004, 15:51 GMT 16:51 UK
6 May 2004
Question Time, the BBC's premier political programme chaired by David Dimbleby, was in Birmingham on 6 May. He was joined for the interactive debate by Yvette Cooper MP, Nicholas Soames MP, Lord Steel, Bishop Sentamu and Jane Moore.

Yvette Cooper MP


Title: Minister, Office for the Deputy Prime Minister

Career: Yvette Cooper entered the Commons in 1997 after winning the safe Labour seat of Pontefract.

Ms Cooper, who is married to Gordon Brown's chief economics adviser Ed Balls, became minister for public health in 1999. She was the first serving minister to take maternity leave.

Previously she had been an economic researcher for John Smith and acted as an adviser to Bill Clinton's election campaign team. She has also worked as a leader writer for The Independent.

Nicholas Soames MP


Title: Shadow Defence Secretary

Career: Former army officer Nicholas Soames was first elected to the Commons in 1983.

The old Etonian has a distinguished family background. His grandfather is Sir Winston Churchill and his father, Christopher Soames was governor of Rhodesia and leader of the House of Lords.

In John Major's government, Mr Soames spent three years as a minister for the armed forces. The country gentleman, who hunts, shoots and fishes, is a close friend of the Prince of Wales.

Sir David Steel


Title: Former Liberal Party Leader

Career: Sir David Steel gave his party its first taste of power for nearly 60 years when he negotiated the Lib-Lab pact with Prime Minister James Callaghan.
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After heading the Liberal Party for 12 years, he also brought it to its end when it merged with the SDP, leading to the creation of the Liberal Democrats.

Lord Steel, who stood down as first presiding officer of the Scottish Parliament in 2003, was once the youngest MP in Westminster when in 1965 he won a by-election at the age of 26.

Bishop Sentamu


Title: Bishop of Birmingham

Career: Ugandan-born John Sentamu became the UK's first senior black Anglican bishop in June 2002.

Bishop Sentamu, who trained as a judge in Uganda before moving to the UK, opposed the war in Iraq on moral grounds and arranged a protest in Birmingham against military action.

He is a high-profile campaigner for racial equality and as an adviser to the Stephen Lawrence Inquiry he was instrumental in the report which branded the Metropolitan Police "institutionally racist".

Jane Moore


Journalist and broadcaster

Career: Jane Moore, who is best known for her opinion column in the Sun, has also been a royal correspondent and feature writer at the newspaper.

Her appearances on radio and TV have included co-presenting the breakfast show on LBC, stints on BBC Radio Five Live's phone-in show, ITV's Loose Women and This Morning.

Ms Moore has written two novels, Fourplay and The Ex-Files.

BBC One's Question Time is broadcast on Thursdays at 2235 GMT.


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