The week in lobbying

The Liberal Democrats have appointed Bell Pottinger's Jonny Oates to oversee the party's media strategy for the upcoming general election. As revealed on, Oates is returning to the party a year after moving to Bell Pottinger as strategic media director. Prior to this he was the party's director of policy and comms.

Tata Consultancy Services has hired Saffron Chase to deliver PR and public affairs for its UK public sector division. Tata, a global top ten IT and business services firm, is keen to become involved in the delivery of UK public sector IT programmes.

Discovery Networks has appointed Kerry Neilson to a new role as vice-president of public policy and government relations for Discovery Networks UK and EMEA. Neilson joins in September from the Satellite and Cable Broadcasters Group.

Hanover has signed up College Public Policy consultant Sam Graham as an account director. Before consultancy, Graham worked for Conservative MPs, including Iain Duncan Smith and Liam Fox.

DLA Piper Global Government Relations has been appointed by Careforce, one of the leading at-home care providers in the UK. The agency will provide political and media relations advice.

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