Peter played the long game and saw the big picture. I worked closely with him campaigning to protect the term organic on beauty products, an area he liked to joke that he was naturally suited to! We had great fun.
When we came across companies which packaged their products in a way that could potentially mislead consumers, you could almost hear Peter rubbing his hands with glee down the phone. He was so keen to make sure companies did the right thing and that consumer rights – and the term organic – were protected.
When we received legal letters about our campaigning, Peter found this exciting and said it showed we were having an impact. Our serious phone calls with the lawyer were peppered with jokes and he would chuckle delightedly when I pointed out something incorrect in the opposition’s approach.
Peter always knew exactly where the line was and trod it very carefully, proving time and again that we were in the right. He was fair, open minded and had faith in his colleagues and our abilities. He would take the time to listen to the views of people working at the coal face and to address the concerns of staff who felt our approach was too radical (it wasn’t).
He respected people and – as a good friend & colleague said to me on sharing the news – he was one of few senior men who genuinely felt women were equal. He proved this in a meeting when we were discussing the possibility of more beauty campaigning. I pointed out that I wouldn’t be around as I was going on maternity leave. Peter boomed affectionately down the phone; “Jenny! Maternity leave doesn’t last forever!” The whole meeting fell about laughing.