REVEALED: Brexit wrecker's EU handouts - Duke of Wellington pocketed farming subsidies
tony at cultureshop.org.uk
Thu May 10 17:57:26 BST 2018
REVEALED: Brexit wrecker's EU handouts - Duke of
Wellington pocketed farming subsidies
THE House of Lords ringleader defying the will of
the people over Brexit receives significant EU
land subsidies for his vast country estate. The
Duke of Wellington is chief among a group of
unelected peers who have helped inflict 14
defeats on the Governments flagship Brexit legislation in the Lords.
CHAPMAN, DAVID PILDITCH AND GILES SHELDRICK
PUBLISHED: 00:01, Thu, May 10, 2018 | UPDATED: 13:34, Thu, May 10, 2018
The ninth duke Arthur Charles Valerian
Wellesley, 72, has spearheaded a cross-party
move to delete the exit date, March 29, 2019, from the EU (Withdrawal) Bill.
The duke has claimed he is trying to help the
Government and not thwart the process.
But the apparent conflict of interest over the
subsidies he and others receive has sparked fury.
He is one of just four dukes among the 92
hereditary peers entitled to vote in the Lords
and was joined in the attack on Brexit by another, the Duke of Somerset.
The Duke of Wellington, educated at Eton and
Oxford, is believed to have received over £80,000
in EU subsidies for part of his 7,000 acre Hampshire estate in 2015.
He is also believed to have claimed other
separate subsidies for land he owns in Spain and Belgium.
He is one of 17 of the UKs 24 non-Royal Dukes
who receive large annual EU farm subsidies for the land they own.
In 2015, according to official figures, the total
figure was around £4.6billion, the bulk paid to
aristocrats directly or to trusts, companies and entities controlled by them.
The Duke of Somerset, a landowner, receives the
subsidies and a number of life peers have sizeable EU pensions.
Tory MP and Brexiteer Jacob Rees-Mogg accused
peers of ignoring the views of 17.4 million Leave
voters expressed in the EU Referendum on June 23, 2016.
Mr Rees-Mogg said: The arrogance of the House of
Lords is unbelievable. They think they know best
and people like them should be listened to rather than voters.
The European Union is entirely unaccountable,
which is why perhaps it is natural the House of
Lords is its biggest cheerleader. Unelected,
unaccountable people support each other, vested
interests come together, birds of a feather flock together.
Mr Rees-Mogg added: The vitriol against Brexit,
the condescension, their sheer arrogance and
therefore their willingness to burn the
constitutional conventions weakens public
acceptability for the House of Lords.
Tory MEP David Campbell Bannerman said: Former
EU Commissioners and MEPs in receipt of EU
pensions, farm subsidies and other EU payments
seem to have a major conflict of interest when
voting for single market and other measures. Its time to come clean on this.
The 14 defeats mean peers have set themselves on
a collision course with the Commons by demanding MPs rethink Brexit.
Among those leading the charge to derail Brexit
is Viscount Hailsham, who as MP Douglas Hogg
claimed upwards of £2,000 from the taxpayer for
cleaning the moat at his sprawling Lincolnshire estate.
He was supported by scores of life peers
including former Labour leader Lord Kinnock, a
former vice president of the European Commission
who is estimated to get almost £90,000 a year from his Brussels pension pot.
Lord Tugendhat and Lord Patten both served in the
European Commission and are believed to get close
to £40,000 a year in pensions. Former EU trade
commissioner Lord Mandelson, who was twice forced
to resign from government, has also voted for amendments to the Bill.
Other peers playing key roles in Government
defeats include former pensions minister Baroness
Altmann and former deputy prime minister Lord
Heseltine, who has a £300million personal fortune.
Tory MP Henry Smith said: By voting against the
largest majority decision ever taken by a British
electorate the undemocratic House of Lords are
inexorably moving towards abolition.
Neither the Duke of Wellington or the Duke of
Somerset responded to requests for comment last night.
Analysis by Kevin Cahill, author of Who Owns Britain
Back in 1999 the House of Lords booted out most,
but not quite all, of those who sat in Parliament
because they inherited a title from a parent.
There are still 91 of these people, including
four dukes, a couple of marquises, 10 earls and
12 viscounts plus about 60 lords or barons,
sitting in the current UK Parliament.
Because they are landowners they are entitled to handouts from the EU.
The Duke of Norfolk, Edward Howard, is the
hereditary Earl Marshal of England, holding a
title that dates originally from 1397.
He sits in the House of Lords and is also one of
England's great landowners who was estimated to
own 46,000 acres in 2001. At the average EU
agricultural subsidy of £100 an acre he would be
entitled to over £4 million a year.
Duke of Norfolk is the hereditary Earl Marshal of England
The Duke of Somerset is John Seymour, a quantity
surveyor who holds a title dating back to 1547.
The family once owned 25,000 acres.
That is now reduced to just a couple of family
trust farms of 2,000 acres or so.
But that would attract over £200,000 in taxpayer
funded subsidy each year. In 1872 you could tell
from a book called The Return Of Owners Of Land,
what each of these families owned.
Now you cannot. There is no list of trusts in the
UK. Neither is there an alphabetic list of landowners at the Land Registry.
In Italy and Germany half the land subsidy goes to persons with titles.
The difference is that none of them sit in the
local parliament because of who their ancestors were.
Wellington goes into battle against Brexit
The Duke of Wellington led the charge as some of
the highest ranking members of the British
aristocracy went into battle with the will of the
people over Brexit, writes David Pilditch.
The former Tory MEP is a direct descendent of the
Iron Duke who defeated Napoleon in the Battle of
Waterloo in 1815, leading to the collapse of his French-led European empire.
Waterloo led to the creation of his dukedom and
one of Britain's most famous dynasties.
Born Arthur Charles Valerian Wellesley on August
19 1945, the ninth Duke of Wellington inherited
the title on the death of his father in 2014.
Along with it came great wealth, the family seat
Stratfield Saye House in Hampshire and Apsley House, London.
The Eton and Oxford-educated duke also owns land
near the scenes of the Iron Duke's greatest
triumphs in Wallonia, Belgium, and Granada, Spain.
The duke, now 72, married his wife Antonia in
1977. She is the daughter of Prince Frederick of
Prussia and a descendent of Kaiser Wilhelm II of
Germany, who plunged Europe into war in 1914. They have five children.
The duke lost his right to sit in the House of
Lords in 1999 after a reform of the second
chamber, but returned to a voting seat in 2015.
He introduced the amendment to remove the March
29, 2019 Brexit date from the legislation,
insisting he was not trying to "thwart the
process" but wanted to give the Commons a chance
to rethink including the date, which might have to be changed.
The duke said ministers should be given "a bit
more flexibility" to secure and ratify the best
possible deal which will "do the least damage to
the economy and the national interest".
The aristocratic landowning Old Etonian defying the will of the people
The Duke of Somerset supported all four amendments in the Lords.
The Eton-educated aristocratic landowner is one
of just four dukes in the House and stood alongside the Duke of Wellington.
His principal seat is Bradley House in the
Wiltshire village of Bradley Maiden, which is
part of the family estate with farms and property
to rent. The family also own Berry Pomeroy Castle in Devon, a medieval ruin.
The quantity surveyor's ancient title dates back
to 1547. He is a descendant of Jane Seymour,
Henry VIII's third wife. The first Duke of Somerset was Jane's brother, Edward.
The 19th duke, father-of-four John Seymour, 65,
inherited the title in 1984. He lost his place in
the Lords under the 1999 reforms but was elected back in 2014.
In the Lords in July 2016 he described the
referendum result as "unexpected and dismaying"
and "a great political failure".
He has also said the "exact ramifications, were
unclear" and "our strongest negotiating card is to delay invoking Article 50".
'From South America, where payment must be made
with subtlety, the Bormann organization has made
a substantial contribution. It has drawn many of
the brightest Jewish businessmen into a
participatory role in the development of many of
its corporations, and many of these Jews share
their prosperity most generously with Israel. If
their proposals are sound, they are even provided
with a specially dispensed venture capital fund.
I spoke with one Jewish businessmen in Hartford,
Connecticut. He had arrived there quite unknown
several years before our conversation, but with
Bormann money as his leverage. Today he is more
than a millionaire, a quiet leader in the
community with a certain share of his profits
earmarked as always for his venture capital
benefactors. This has taken place in many other
instances across America and demonstrates how
Bormanns people operate in the contemporary
commercial world, in contrast to the fanciful
nonsense with which Nazis are described in so much literature.
So much emphasis is placed on select Jewish
participation in Bormann companies that when
Adolf Eichmann was seized and taken to Tel Aviv
to stand trial, it produced a shock wave in the
Jewish and German communities of Buenos Aires.
Jewish leaders informed the Israeli authorities
in no uncertain terms that this must never happen
again because a repetition would permanently
rupture relations with the Germans of Latin
America, as well as with the Bormann
organization, and cut off the flow of Jewish
money to Israel. It never happened again, and the
pursuit of Bormann quieted down at the request of
these Jewish leaders. He is residing in an
Argentinian safe haven, protected by the most
efficient German infrastructure in history as
well as by all those whose prosperity depends on his well-being.'
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