The son of a professional cricketer and a nurse, John David Beckett Taylor was educated at Moseley Grammar School in Birmingham and Keele University. He was called to the Bar in 1978, when he won the Gray's Inn Advocacy Award. In 1992, he unsuccessfully contested the parliamentary seat of Cheltenham for the Conservatives. He was created a life peer in 1996 - at the age of 42 - at that time making him one of the youngest and only black members of the House of Lords. While only in his first year in the House of Lords, he introduced and carried through all its stages a legislative bill which now sits on the statute bill as the Criminal Evidence Amendment Act
His interest in the media is evidenced by his role as Vice President of the British Board of Film Classification; Vice Chairman of The All Party Parliamentary Media Group and role as presenter with ITV, Sky and the BBC (e.g. Crime Stalker, BBC1's System on Trial with John Taylor, and The John Taylor programme on BBC Radio 2.
John Taylor was Special Adviser to the Home secretary and Minister of State in 1990-91, when his portfolio included Inner Cities, Legal services and Crime prevention.
Lord Taylor has always had a passion for sport, especially cricket as his father played for Warwickshire and the West Indies. He himself is a former Warwickshire County Colts cricketer, county rugby player and athlete.
Lord Taylor of Warwick is a Patron of various children's charities, including Kidscape and Parents for Children. He is also vice President of the national Small Business Bureau and the British Board of Film Classification.
John Taylor was awarded an Honorary Doctorate in Laws (LLD) at Warwick University on the 14th of July 1999.
He and Lady Taylor (Katherine), a doctor of medicine, have three young children.