Conservative Diary

« The shadow cabinet defends itself | Main | I'd happily pay Michael Gove ten times his salary if he fixed Britain's schools »

James Gray denies that he claimed for Remembrance wreaths

GRAY IN PARLIAMENT The MP accused of claiming for a poppy wreaths on expenses has just issued this statement about Sunday's News of the World story:

"Press comment in the last day or two has suggested that I submitted a claim for the cost of Remembrance Sunday wreaths against my Parliamentary allowances. That is simply not true, as the receipts which will shortly be released by the Parliamentary authorities will show. It is in fact  a rehash of a very old newspaper story from 2003, when I put down a Parliamentary Question to ask the then Leader of the House of Commons, Peter Hain, whether or not wreaths laid by MPs in their official capacity were regarded as an official expense. He replied that they were not, as a result of which I have not, and would not, claim for them.

I particularly resent the implication that I am somehow or another not supportive of the Royal British Legion or our servicemen and women. I served for seven years in the Territorial Army, am Chairman of the All Party Group for the Army, I have visited our troops on several occasions in both Iraq and Afghanistan, and I myself am a member of the Royal British Legion, alongside whom I am proud to stand on Wootton Bassett High Street during the all too regular repatriations of the bodies of our fallen servicemen."

Meanwhile Iain Dale accuses Mr Gray of photographing a dying soldier.

Tim Montgomerie


You must be logged in using Intense Debate, Wordpress, Twitter or Facebook to comment.