11 millionaires who voted for Tory tax credit cuts in the House of Lords

Keith Parkins
Oct 30, 2015 · 6 min read

George Osborne enlisted some of Britain’s richest people in a panicked bid to save his tax credit cuts.

More than 270 peers trooped through the House of Lords last night to back the Tory Chancellor — and were allowed to claim £300 each just for turning up.

Now their names have been released in a roll call which includes some of Britain’s most prominent multi-millionaires.

Theatre bigwig and Tory peer Andrew Lloyd-Webber prompted outrage by voting after flying in from New York for work .

Billionaire Tory donor Lord Bamford, Britain’s 29th richest man, took a break from running the JCB digger empire to troop through the lobbies with his peers.

Bra tycoon Michelle Mone also backed the cuts despite enjoying free travel last month in a ministerial car — where she hung out her top to dry .

George Osborne is plotting revenge on the unelected Lords after he lost the vote despite the millionaires’ help.

Peers backed by 289 votes to 272 an amendment by Labour Baroness Patricia Hollis calling for those affected to be spared for at least three years.

They also backed a crossbench amendment to delay cuts until effects on the poor were explained by 307 to 277.

Here are some of the millionaires who tried to vote those amendments down.

1. Andrew Lloyd-Webber

Estimated wealth : £650m

Source of wealth : Theatre empire

The musicals bigwig entered the Lords in 1997 as a Tory peer but has become a rare sight since then. In the past 14 years he has voted 30 times out of a possible 1,898, according to records site The Public Whip. He took part in the vote after flying in from New York for a Cats premiere in London .

2. Michelle Mone

Estimated wealth : £20m

Source of wealth : Founder of Ultimo lingerie brand

Baroness Mone is one of the newest entrants to the House of Lords, swearing in less than two weeks ago. She is leading a business project with the welfare-slashing Department for Work and Pensions. Her comments on social media have previously landed her in hot water — including when she boasted about having a free ministerial car.

3. Anthony Bamford

Estimated wealth : £3.1bn

Source of wealth : JCB construction equipment empire

Lord Bamford inherited his part in the JCB empire from his father Joseph, who founded it. He has become one of the most valuable and influential donors to the Tory party in recent years after handing over more than £3m, much of which comes from a separate firm called JCB Research.

4. Karren Brady

Estimated wealth : £82m

Source of wealth : Sport Newspapers, Mothercare, West Ham FC & Arcadia

Best known for her appearances on The Apprentice, Karren Brady became Baroness Brady last year and has worked closely on business projects for the Tories. The West Ham vice-chairman’s views on benefits are a mixed picture. Last year she said stay-at-home mums should be valued as businesswomen.

5. Karan Bilimoria

Estimated wealth : Unknown

Source of wealth : Cobra beer

Cobra’s value was put at more than £50m last year and the crossbench peer has ambitions to overtake Peroni as restaurants’ lager of choice. The son of an Indian Army commander, Lord Bilimoria of Chelsea entered the Lords in 2006 and does not sit with Tory peers so was not whipped to vote. He did not back the Labour or Lib Dem amendments to delay tax credit cuts, but did back the Bishop of Portsmouth ‘s expression of ‘regret’ over their failure to help poor people more.

6. Simon Wolfson

Estimated wealth : £112m

Source of wealth : Next clothing chain

The Tory peer hasn’t always backed George Osborne this strongly since joining the Lords in 2010. In March he sparked outrage by dismissing a living wage campaign — before the chancellor invented his own version. Britain’s 791st richest man insisted £6.70 an hour was enough to live on for many people without families.

7. Jonathan Marland

Estimated wealth : £100m

Source of wealth : Insurance & Hunter Wellington boots

The Tory peer since 2006 is a serial investor who has fingers in a shelf of pies including property and consultancy. He has stronger links to the government than most peers after serving as a climate change minister and heading up copyright policy under the Coalition.

8. Stanley Kalms

Estimated wealth : Unknown

Source of wealth : Dixons electronics

The 83-year-old started his career at the age of 17 in Dixons, founded by his father Charles just before the Second World War. Since then it has ballooned into one of the largest chains of its kind in the world — and he never left. He no longer features among Britain’s 1,000 richest people in the Sunday Times Rich List, but his wealth was put at £45m in 2009.

9. Philip Harris

Estimated wealth : Unknown

Source of wealth : Selling carpets

The Carpetright chief executive of more than 20 years became a Tory peer in 1996 and has strong links to the party. For four years he was the deputy chairman of its board of treasurers under John Major. His wealth was estimated at £285m in 2006.

10. Stanley Fink

Estimated wealth : £150m

Source of wealth : Hedge funds

The 58-year-old has been described generously as the ‘godfather’ of the hedge fund industry. In the Lords since 2011, he holds a string of directorships for investment and events management firms. He has given more than £3m to the Conservative party and served as its treasurer during the leadership of Iain Duncan Smith.

11. Stephen Green

Estimated wealth : Unknown

Source of wealth : Banking

The former HSBC chairman moved fluidly from his work in the stricken banking sector to serving the Tories as a trade minister after he joined the Lords in 2010. A 2009 interview suggested he had received £9m in salary and £6m in bonuses at HSBC, but he said he would not accept a bonus again due to the frugal times.

And finally…. Sebastian Coe

Though his wealth his not publicly declared, the Olympic medal-winner and ex-London 2012 boss is worthy of mention due to his long history with the Tory party. He served as a Treasury assistant whip as long ago as 1996. An article four years ago said he received a £365,000 salary for his Olympics work and could charge £10,000 a speech.

Originally published at Mirror.

Please support the boycott of the companies associated with these named individuals. No surprise these companies are too often tax-dodgers, and employ staff on minimum wage, zero hours, part time, temporary contracts.

Light on a Dark Mountain

The machine is stuttering and the engineers are in panic. They are wondering if perhaps they do not understand it as well as they imagined. They are wondering whether they are controlling it at all or whether, perhaps, it is controlling them.— The Dark Mountain Manifesto

Welcome to a place where words matter. On Medium, smart voices and original ideas take center stage - with no ads in sight. Watch
Follow all the topics you care about, and we’ll deliver the best stories for you to your homepage and inbox. Explore
Get unlimited access to the best stories on Medium — and support writers while you’re at it. Just $5/month. Upgrade