Finch to House of Lords: revoke Hanningfield's peerage

Finch to House of Lords: revoke Hanningfield's peerage

Lord Hanningfield

David Finch

First published in News
Last updated

THE leader of Essex County Council has called on the House of Lords to revoke Lord Hanningfield’s peerage.

Essex County Council leader David Finch is to write to the House of Lords after the council decided to shelve legal action attempting to claw back £50,000 of taxpayers money after a last-ditch attempt to revive it was blocked.

Essex County Council leader David Finch announced this month he would not pursue the cash the authority believed was wrongly claimed in expenses by one of his predecessors.

Mr Finch accepted the recommendation of the authority’s audit committee, which had been told it would cost up to £110,000 to take the former Tory peer to launch a potentially unsuccessful legal battle.

That decision was immediately “called-in” by both opposition Lib Dem and Labour councillors for a scrutiny panel meeting on Tuesday.

The panel could have forced Mr Finch to look again at the decision.

But the bid failed after Conservative councillors on the committee insisted the original decision should remain.

However, Mr Finch said he will be writing to the House of Lords requesting them to remove his peerage.

The suggestion was put forward by Ukip.

Comments (22)

Please log in to enable comment sorting

12:50pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Howard Cháse says...

Well said Mr Finch.

Back to the hoi polloi for Piggy White.
Well said Mr Finch. Back to the hoi polloi for Piggy White. Howard Cháse
  • Score: 12

1:09pm Wed 23 Jul 14

co2 says...

Double standards all round im afraid to say,lord hanningfield is a disgrace,but for Essex county council stating they never pursued the £50000 as it would cost £110000 to pursue it gets little sympathy for me.
Our own immoral ecc have done the same with scores of motorists in relation to pot hole claims,they know many cant afford to take action against them,ecc get little sympathy from me when stating legal costs as a factor in not taking action.
Double standards all round im afraid to say,lord hanningfield is a disgrace,but for Essex county council stating they never pursued the £50000 as it would cost £110000 to pursue it gets little sympathy for me. Our own immoral ecc have done the same with scores of motorists in relation to pot hole claims,they know many cant afford to take action against them,ecc get little sympathy from me when stating legal costs as a factor in not taking action. co2
  • Score: 24

1:34pm Wed 23 Jul 14

cynicalsubber says...

Cue more whinging from Paul White about how he's the real victim in all this...
Cue more whinging from Paul White about how he's the real victim in all this... cynicalsubber
  • Score: 16

1:41pm Wed 23 Jul 14

hughie-s says...

Piggy will stay feeding at the trough, throwing him out would set a precedent and as a lot of his curly tailed friends would be fearful that they would follow when their little secrets see the light of day they will not vote for it.
Piggy will stay feeding at the trough, throwing him out would set a precedent and as a lot of his curly tailed friends would be fearful that they would follow when their little secrets see the light of day they will not vote for it. hughie-s
  • Score: 10

1:49pm Wed 23 Jul 14

hughie-s says...

February expenses just published, he only turned up 8 times out a possible 12 but still trousered £2100 in attendance allowance and £348 in various travel expenses. In January 9 out of 18 £2400 and £394 in expenses.
February expenses just published, he only turned up 8 times out a possible 12 but still trousered £2100 in attendance allowance and £348 in various travel expenses. In January 9 out of 18 £2400 and £394 in expenses. hughie-s
  • Score: 5

1:54pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Kim Gandy says...

The motion was put forward by UKIP. No sign of a coalition there either then.
The motion was put forward by UKIP. No sign of a coalition there either then. Kim Gandy
  • Score: 2

2:02pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Route88 says...

It may have been possible to find some forgiveness had he admitted his guilt, apologised and paid all of the money back but he has remained arrogant from the very beginning, continued to 'milk' the system and deserves all he gets.
It may have been possible to find some forgiveness had he admitted his guilt, apologised and paid all of the money back but he has remained arrogant from the very beginning, continued to 'milk' the system and deserves all he gets. Route88
  • Score: 23

2:05pm Wed 23 Jul 14

James Abbott says...

We need an Independent Inquiry into the years when Lord H was Leader at County Hall to answer questions including:

Who signed off his cost claims for globetrotting and wining and dining ?
Who went with him on his trips abroad and why ?
Why were records of his claims prior to 2005 lost ?

Many of the senior councillors now wringing their hands were sat alongside Lord H at the time - he only resigned in 2010. No wonder they want to "draw a line" under the expenses scandal and not take formal action to get the money back. A lot of other information about the Lord H years might emerge into the light of day !

BTW, we could not take part in the Calling In of this issue as we were given no seats on Scrutiny.


Cllr. James Abbott
Green Group, Essex County Council
We need an Independent Inquiry into the years when Lord H was Leader at County Hall to answer questions including: Who signed off his cost claims for globetrotting and wining and dining ? Who went with him on his trips abroad and why ? Why were records of his claims prior to 2005 lost ? Many of the senior councillors now wringing their hands were sat alongside Lord H at the time - he only resigned in 2010. No wonder they want to "draw a line" under the expenses scandal and not take formal action to get the money back. A lot of other information about the Lord H years might emerge into the light of day ! BTW, we could not take part in the Calling In of this issue as we were given no seats on Scrutiny. Cllr. James Abbott Green Group, Essex County Council James Abbott
  • Score: 16

2:17pm Wed 23 Jul 14

keith_l says...

I can hazzard a guess why claims prior to 2005 are "lost". It is a legal requirement for any business to retain details of financial transactions for the current tax year plus 6 years.

Most organisations (and I assume ECC) have a policy that such information is destroyed as soon as possible after the legal retention requirement, as to retain them for longer this can be seen to be in breach of data protection laws, and also to make more work should anybody make a subject data request.

The only exception to this is if there is a court order in place prohibiting disposal, which is normally only whilst there are current legal proceedings.

(but I agree with the rest of your post)
I can hazzard a guess why claims prior to 2005 are "lost". It is a legal requirement for any business to retain details of financial transactions for the current tax year plus 6 years. Most organisations (and I assume ECC) have a policy that such information is destroyed as soon as possible after the legal retention requirement, as to retain them for longer this can be seen to be in breach of data protection laws, and also to make more work should anybody make a subject data request. The only exception to this is if there is a court order in place prohibiting disposal, which is normally only whilst there are current legal proceedings. (but I agree with the rest of your post) keith_l
  • Score: 5

3:37pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Shrubendlad says...

Yes Any Member of Parliament(Lords or Commons) should be stripped of all titles if they go to prison.
And if a member of parliament-like Russells flatmate and close friend Mike Hancock is forced out of their political party --due to misconduct or alleged misconduct-they should be forced to hold a by election.
Yes Any Member of Parliament(Lords or Commons) should be stripped of all titles if they go to prison. And if a member of parliament-like Russells flatmate and close friend Mike Hancock is forced out of their political party --due to misconduct or alleged misconduct-they should be forced to hold a by election. Shrubendlad
  • Score: 4

4:02pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Shrubendlad says...

Shrubendlad wrote:
Yes Any Member of Parliament(Lords or Commons) should be stripped of all titles if they go to prison.
And if a member of parliament-like Russells flatmate and close friend Mike Hancock is forced out of their political party --due to misconduct or alleged misconduct-they should be forced to hold a by election.
Ive never understood how Russell as Hancocks close friend and flatmate didn't know about the alleged misconduct. Nick Clegg took the LibDem party whip from Hancock but he stayed on as an Independent MP, Portsmouth Councillor and Cabinet member.
At one stage it was alleged there was an affair with a Russian spy and other inappropriate conduct.
[quote][p][bold]Shrubendlad[/bold] wrote: Yes Any Member of Parliament(Lords or Commons) should be stripped of all titles if they go to prison. And if a member of parliament-like Russells flatmate and close friend Mike Hancock is forced out of their political party --due to misconduct or alleged misconduct-they should be forced to hold a by election.[/p][/quote]Ive never understood how Russell as Hancocks close friend and flatmate didn't know about the alleged misconduct. Nick Clegg took the LibDem party whip from Hancock but he stayed on as an Independent MP, Portsmouth Councillor and Cabinet member. At one stage it was alleged there was an affair with a Russian spy and other inappropriate conduct. Shrubendlad
  • Score: 2

4:23pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Shrubendlad says...

Shrubendlad wrote:
Shrubendlad wrote:
Yes Any Member of Parliament(Lords or Commons) should be stripped of all titles if they go to prison.
And if a member of parliament-like Russells flatmate and close friend Mike Hancock is forced out of their political party --due to misconduct or alleged misconduct-they should be forced to hold a by election.
Ive never understood how Russell as Hancocks close friend and flatmate didn't know about the alleged misconduct. Nick Clegg took the LibDem party whip from Hancock but he stayed on as an Independent MP, Portsmouth Councillor and Cabinet member.
At one stage it was alleged there was an affair with a Russian spy and other inappropriate conduct.
As far as I can recall-and I am open to correction-Russell claimed to be the "whistleblower" in the Paul White case.
Russell and Hancock were known as "the twins". They were born within days of each other in 1946 and entered Parliament together in 1997.
Russell replaced Hancock on the Defence Committee.
[quote][p][bold]Shrubendlad[/bold] wrote: [quote][p][bold]Shrubendlad[/bold] wrote: Yes Any Member of Parliament(Lords or Commons) should be stripped of all titles if they go to prison. And if a member of parliament-like Russells flatmate and close friend Mike Hancock is forced out of their political party --due to misconduct or alleged misconduct-they should be forced to hold a by election.[/p][/quote]Ive never understood how Russell as Hancocks close friend and flatmate didn't know about the alleged misconduct. Nick Clegg took the LibDem party whip from Hancock but he stayed on as an Independent MP, Portsmouth Councillor and Cabinet member. At one stage it was alleged there was an affair with a Russian spy and other inappropriate conduct.[/p][/quote]As far as I can recall-and I am open to correction-Russell claimed to be the "whistleblower" in the Paul White case. Russell and Hancock were known as "the twins". They were born within days of each other in 1946 and entered Parliament together in 1997. Russell replaced Hancock on the Defence Committee. Shrubendlad
  • Score: 1

5:12pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Wicky1 says...

Under Paul White's 'leadership' and example there were other Tory councillors raking in expenses. How many more were filling their boots and for how long?

i.e "(Tory) couple couple claimed over £91,500 in allowances over the period of a year."

http://ourvisionthei
rfuture.wordpress.co
m/2010/06/29/sarah-c
andy-and-essex-count
y-council-expenses-c
riticised/
Under Paul White's 'leadership' and example there were other Tory councillors raking in expenses. How many more were filling their boots and for how long? i.e "(Tory) couple couple claimed over £91,500 in allowances over the period of a year." http://ourvisionthei rfuture.wordpress.co m/2010/06/29/sarah-c andy-and-essex-count y-council-expenses-c riticised/ Wicky1
  • Score: 4

5:25pm Wed 23 Jul 14

sesibollox says...

Tidy up your own house, Essex County Council, before looking to judge others...
Tidy up your own house, Essex County Council, before looking to judge others... sesibollox
  • Score: 7

5:39pm Wed 23 Jul 14

RU Sirius says...

Nice buck-passing from Essex CC, though surely someone could have pointed out to David Finch that there is currently no power to remove a peerage from someone and convicted criminals like Hanningfield and Jeffrey Archer have seats for life in the Lords.
Nice buck-passing from Essex CC, though surely someone could have pointed out to David Finch that there is currently no power to remove a peerage from someone and convicted criminals like Hanningfield and Jeffrey Archer have seats for life in the Lords. RU Sirius
  • Score: 11

7:03pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Harry-Brown says...

'what about one line complaint response'
Essex Police Authority Chairman
Robert "Pursey" Stevens???
'what about one line complaint response' Essex Police Authority Chairman Robert "Pursey" Stevens??? Harry-Brown
  • Score: 3

7:28pm Wed 23 Jul 14

KA-Wivenhoe says...

Off topic, but in answer to the first post by CO2, I hit a pothole and sent in a claim.

It was totally rejected, stating that the hole wasn't there. I checked with residents nearby, took several photographs, and when they still refused stating "We have an obligation to protect ECC assets, I issued a summons in the County Court.

They tried to bluff me, frighten me off etc., with claims of huge costs, but I persisted. Seven days before the County Court hearing they settled my £600 damages in full, with all my costs and expenses.
Off topic, but in answer to the first post by CO2, I hit a pothole and sent in a claim. It was totally rejected, stating that the hole wasn't there. I checked with residents nearby, took several photographs, and when they still refused stating "We have an obligation to protect ECC assets, I issued a summons in the County Court. They tried to bluff me, frighten me off etc., with claims of huge costs, but I persisted. Seven days before the County Court hearing they settled my £600 damages in full, with all my costs and expenses. KA-Wivenhoe
  • Score: 11

9:48pm Wed 23 Jul 14

Jack222 says...

Now if we actually had a real democracy when people in the Upper House were actually elected - as in, like the rest of the world - then it wouldn't be any real issue.

It's just another reason to have an elected Upper House of parliament.
Now if we actually had a real democracy when people in the Upper House were actually elected - as in, like the rest of the world - then it wouldn't be any real issue. It's just another reason to have an elected Upper House of parliament. Jack222
  • Score: 6

11:58pm Wed 23 Jul 14

ORACUS says...

All our politicians are lining their pockets and saying that they're saving us money so they deserve it he is no exception.
My opinion is they are all corrupt apart from UKIP.
All our politicians are lining their pockets and saying that they're saving us money so they deserve it he is no exception. My opinion is they are all corrupt apart from UKIP. ORACUS
  • Score: 0

12:47am Thu 24 Jul 14

Boris says...

RU Sirius wrote:
Nice buck-passing from Essex CC, though surely someone could have pointed out to David Finch that there is currently no power to remove a peerage from someone and convicted criminals like Hanningfield and Jeffrey Archer have seats for life in the Lords.
RU, you are right. The House of Lords has no power to remove a peerage. Only the Queen can do that, but she won't. Finch knows that. So his letter is just an idle gesture. ECC should be pursuing Paul White through the courts, even if it costs far more than the amount to be recovered. Most Essex people would agree with that.
[quote][p][bold]RU Sirius[/bold] wrote: Nice buck-passing from Essex CC, though surely someone could have pointed out to David Finch that there is currently no power to remove a peerage from someone and convicted criminals like Hanningfield and Jeffrey Archer have seats for life in the Lords.[/p][/quote]RU, you are right. The House of Lords has no power to remove a peerage. Only the Queen can do that, but she won't. Finch knows that. So his letter is just an idle gesture. ECC should be pursuing Paul White through the courts, even if it costs far more than the amount to be recovered. Most Essex people would agree with that. Boris
  • Score: 9

12:36pm Thu 24 Jul 14

James Abbott says...

ORACUS - that's an interesting notion that UKIP are the only party free from corruption.

Politicians elected under the UKIP banner to the European Parliament have subsequently been jailed for benefits fraud and expenses fraud. Farage himself has boasted of the £ millions he has taken whilst being an MEP - that may not be corrupt but it certainly does not fit with his attacks on "Gravy-Train" Euro politicians.

The Greens have suffered no such expenses scandals and on Essex County Council we have an agreement between the two Green ECC councillors not to claim traveling expenses nor to take the free dinners still being dished out to other councillors at taxpayers expense. We are still campaigning to end that misuse of public money.
ORACUS - that's an interesting notion that UKIP are the only party free from corruption. Politicians elected under the UKIP banner to the European Parliament have subsequently been jailed for benefits fraud and expenses fraud. Farage himself has boasted of the £ millions he has taken whilst being an MEP - that may not be corrupt but it certainly does not fit with his attacks on "Gravy-Train" Euro politicians. The Greens have suffered no such expenses scandals and on Essex County Council we have an agreement between the two Green ECC councillors not to claim traveling expenses nor to take the free dinners still being dished out to other councillors at taxpayers expense. We are still campaigning to end that misuse of public money. James Abbott
  • Score: 8

1:21am Fri 25 Jul 14

Boris says...

James Abbott wrote:
ORACUS - that's an interesting notion that UKIP are the only party free from corruption.

Politicians elected under the UKIP banner to the European Parliament have subsequently been jailed for benefits fraud and expenses fraud. Farage himself has boasted of the £ millions he has taken whilst being an MEP - that may not be corrupt but it certainly does not fit with his attacks on "Gravy-Train" Euro politicians.

The Greens have suffered no such expenses scandals and on Essex County Council we have an agreement between the two Green ECC councillors not to claim traveling expenses nor to take the free dinners still being dished out to other councillors at taxpayers expense. We are still campaigning to end that misuse of public money.
Well done the Greens, an infinitely better option than UKIP for anyone who is fed up with the three "main" parties.
[quote][p][bold]James Abbott[/bold] wrote: ORACUS - that's an interesting notion that UKIP are the only party free from corruption. Politicians elected under the UKIP banner to the European Parliament have subsequently been jailed for benefits fraud and expenses fraud. Farage himself has boasted of the £ millions he has taken whilst being an MEP - that may not be corrupt but it certainly does not fit with his attacks on "Gravy-Train" Euro politicians. The Greens have suffered no such expenses scandals and on Essex County Council we have an agreement between the two Green ECC councillors not to claim traveling expenses nor to take the free dinners still being dished out to other councillors at taxpayers expense. We are still campaigning to end that misuse of public money.[/p][/quote]Well done the Greens, an infinitely better option than UKIP for anyone who is fed up with the three "main" parties. Boris
  • Score: 3

Comments are closed on this article.

Send us your news, pictures and videos

Most read stories

Local Info

Enter your postcode, town or place name

About cookies

We want you to enjoy your visit to our website. That's why we use cookies to enhance your experience. By staying on our website you agree to our use of cookies. Find out more about the cookies we use.

I agree