Former Labour MP
Born in 1944, Colin Pickthall has a degree in English Literature and History and gained an MA with a thesis on "The Influence of Socialism on 20th Century British Poetry". He then became a lecturer before entering Parliament in 1992, and leaving in 2005. His particular interests included campaigns on animal welfare and environmental issues; he opposes hunting and hare-coursing. In July 2001 he was one of the signatories to a letter published in The Independent which urged the Government to reconsider its support for the expansion of maintained religious schools.
His Wikipedia profile, see http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Colin_Pickthall
http://politics.guardian.co.uk/iraq/story/0,,1168071,00.html for his views on the Iraq War vote.