July 31, 2021

Revealed: How [UK] globe-trotting MPs went on trips worth £125,000 to 35 different countries

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JS33863253[Cayman Islands was the most expensive]

By Jennifer Williams From Manchester Evening News

Parliamentary declarations shows Simon Danczuk has earned thousands from media work since summer

Labour’s Mr Danczuk has earned more from newspapers and publishing since the summer than any other MP has in five years, including hundreds of pounds for articles attacking his own party.

The M.E.N. trawled through parliament’s register of interests from 2010 to this month to see exactly what our MPs have declared.

Between them they have visited 35 different countries – usually for conferences or fact-finding missions – including Taiwan, Azerbaijan, the Cayman Islands and Thailand.

Downloads46Labour’s Ivan Lewis is the most-travelled in his role as shadow international development secretary, while Tory MP Graham Brady went on the single most expensive trip – an £8,600 visit to Grand Cayman.

He told the MEN that it was to discuss governance issues such as tax transparency.

He also accepted two days at the Caton Hall estate in Derbsyhire – worth a total of £1,650 – from the British Shooting and Conservation Association, which he said was an event ‘to educate MPs’.

Grand Cayman: Graham Brady took the single most expensive trip here, totalling £8,600
Meanwhile, Mr Danczuk has earned nearly £20,000 since the summer for media work.

That includes at least £700 from articles attacking his own party – often over immigration through articles in the right-wing press – plus more than £12,000 from the Daily Mail for serialisation rights on his child abuse book.

He has also accepted £3,000 in hospitality from the tobacco industry – the only Greater Manchester MP to have done so apart from Gorton’s Sir Gerald Kaufmann. He told the M.E.N. he takes a ‘pragmatic’ view on smoking as it is a ‘pleasure that has been demonised in recent years’.

But he said he would not allow such hospitality to sway his voting and had supported the ban on smoking in cars with children.

Greater Manchester Labour MPs have also accepted more than £50,000 in union donations between them, mostly from Unite.

Mark Hunter, Cheadle’s Lib Dem MP, is the only one in Greater Manchester MP not to declare anything.

Rochdale’s Labour MP Simon Danczuk has earned £19,295 from newspaper articles and his book on Cyril Smith since July. At least £700 came from articles attacking his own party, plus others campaigning on child abuse

Altrincham and Sale West’s Graham Brady banked £16,525, mostly for his associated editorship of parliamentary magazine Dods, which he does with other MPs from a range of parties. He also appeared on Any Questions, Sky newspaper review and newspaper articles. He said that was an ‘important way’ of communicating with the public

Salford and Eccles’ Hazel Blears received £1,500 from TV appearances, mostly the BBC’s This Week

Blackley and Broughton’s Graham Stringer was paid £500 for appearing on University Challenge in 2010

Bury South’s Ivan Lewis visited Tanzania, Chad, Rwanda, Burundi, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Tunisia, Thailand, Burma, Israel and Palestine as part of his shadow international development brief. He told the M.E.N.: “An important part of the role is to ensure the government is spending taxpayers’ money wisely overseas.”

Withington’s John Leech went to Iceland to find out about whaling in 2012

The most-visited destinations were Israel and Palestine – by Ivan Lewis, Oldham MP Debbie Abrahams, Bury North’s David Nuttall, Leigh’s Andy Burnham and Stalybridge and Hyde’s Jonathan Reynolds. They were mostly described as factfinding or part of a bid to strengthen relations.

Ten Labour MPs received a total of £45,265 from the unions over this parliament, the most generous being Unite.

The biggest recipient was Wigan’s Lisa Nandy, who got £10,575 from Unite and the Communication Workers Union, followed by Debbie Abrahams, Liz McInnes and Yvonne Fovargue.

Simon Danczuk enjoyed trips to the Chelsea Flower Show and cricket at the Oval provided by cigarette firm Japanese Tobacco, totalling £2,562.

Gorton MP Sir Gerald Kaufman accepted a £1,278 in tickets to classical music festival Glyndbourne from the same firm.

IMAGE: From left: Labour’s Simon Danczuk and Ivan Lewis, and Tory Graham Brady
Globetrotting Greater Manchester MPs have been on £125,000 worth of foreign trips over the current parliament, the M.E.N. can reveal – while Rochdale’s Simon Danczuk is the top media earner.

For more on this story go to: http://www.manchestereveningnews.co.uk/news/greater-manchester-news/revealed-how-globe-trotting-mps-went-8687518

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