British Ambassador to the US and head of the Press Complaints Commission, Christopher Meyer is a keynote and after dinner speaker with enormous authority and a subtle mixture of refinement and irreverence: whether talking about the axis of power between Europe and America, the power (or otherwise) of diplomacy, the Presidential race, ambassadorial etiquette or the history of pop music (his favourite topic).
Sir Christopher Meyer spent almost 40 years in the British Diplomatic Service. His career culminated as Ambassador to the United States during the Bill Clinton and George W. Bush presidencies between 1997 and 2003. His five and a half years in Washington, which made him the longest-serving Ambassador to the USA since the Second World War, coincided with 9/11, the wars in Kosovo, Sierra Leone and Afghanistan, and the preparation for war in Iraq.
Whilst in Washington, Sir Christopher became deeply involved in many critical situations, from peace processes to the ‘war’ against international terrorism and the run-up to the invasion of Iraq. During his six-year term, he gave some 200 speeches, visiting 44 states and 120 cities.
Prior to his role in the US, Sir Christopher occupied a number of key positions. Before then he was Ambassador to Germany and had postings to the former Soviet Union, Spain and the European Union in Brussels. He was also Press Secretary to Prime Minister Sir John Major, Press Secretary to Foreign Secretary, Sir Geoffrey, now Lord, Howe, and speech writer to three Foreign Secretaries, James Callaghan, Anthony Crosland and David Owen.
Meyer’s revealing account of life behind the scenes, DC Confidential, was published in Autumn 2005. Causing a huge amount of controversy, the book became an instant bestseller. His last book, Getting Our Way: 500 Years of Adventure and Intrigue: the Inside Story of British Diplomacy,was published in 2009 and accompanied a three-part TV series for BBC4. In 2012 he presented and co-wrote a six-part TV documentary series for Sky Atlantic, Networks of Power. Sir Christopher has also made several documentaries for BBC Radio 4 with diplomatic and press themes.
When his career in international politics drew to a close, Sir Christopher took a closer interest in issues at home. As Chairman of the Press Complaints Commission, his profile was stellar, and led to many appearances on TV and radio.