Baroness Nicholson was elected a Conservative Member of Parliament for Torridge and West Devon, in 1987, and was vice-chairman between 1983 and 1987. She defected to the Liberal Democrats in 1995. She was made a life peer as Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne, of Winterbourne, in the Royal County of Berkshire in 1997.
As a member of the House of Lords, Baroness Nicholson of Winterbourne makes frequent contributions to Parliamentary deliberations on a wide range of subjects, including foreign affairs, the Islamic world, human rights, refugees and displaced people, poverty reduction, freedom of information, intellectual property, education, health and information technology.
Baroness Nicholson is a member of the United Kingdom Delegation to the Parliamentary Assembly of the Council of Europe and the European Security and Defence Assembly (also known as the Western European Union).
The European Parliament is the only directly-elected body of the European Union. Comprising 736 Members, it is elected every five years by voters across the twenty-seven Member States of the European Union on behalf of its 500 million citizens.