You’ll all recall my article “Swamp Politics: New ‘Cash for Honours’ Scandal“. If not, have a read. Well, in addition to that scandal that saw a 500K donation to the tories 3 days after the person got a seat in the house of lords, it would seem we have yet another example.
John Bloor, 77, a billionaire property tycoon has handed £150,000 to the Conservative Party, shortly after ministers backed his property development.
On March 15, ministers formally gave the green light to a Bloor Homes proposal to build hundreds of homes on rural land in Ledbury, Herefordshire.
Two days later on March 17, Electoral Commission records show, Mr Bloor’s firm Bloor Holdings gave a donation of £150,000 to the Conservative Party.
The Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government did not say if Mr Bloor lobbied ministers ahead of these decisions, the Sunday Times reported.
A government spokeswoman told the Times: “The decision on the Ledbury development was made following a recommendation by the independent Planning Inspector to grant planning permission and in line with published propriety guidance.”
However, records show that in March 2020 the Ministry for Housing, Communities and Local Government took control of the planning application following an appeal by Bloor Homes.
An “independent” planning inspector found in favour of Bloor Homes, and the Secretary of State for Housing, Communities and Local Government then agreed and gave final approval.
While Robert Jenrick is Secretary of State for Housing, the Sunday Times reports the final decision was in fact made by Housing Minister Chris Pincher on his behalf. Two days later, the Tory Party receives a £150,000 donation from Bloor.