But not to 17.4 million voters? Not to democracy?
Philip Hammond “We’ve always said that the UK is a country which honours its obligations”.
Britain’s finance minister Philip Hammond said he would not serve under a prime minister who was prepared to leave the European Union without a deal, as proposed by Boris Johnson and other contenders to become Britain’s next leader. [Welcome news?]
Hammond, speaking to reporters on the sidelines of a meeting of EU finance ministers in Luxembourg on Friday, also warned whoever succeeds Theresa May not to withhold Britain’s dues to the bloc. “Before I could serve in any government, I would want to look at the policies that the prime minister was setting out. I would not be able to serve in a government which had as its policy leaving the European Union without a deal” he said.
Hammond owns a controlling interest in Wrexham-based Castlemead Property, the housebuilder and care homes developer, in which he has shares reportedly worth £4.9m. Hammond set up Castlemead in 1984 with business partner Terry Gregson. Since becoming a government minister, his stake has been controlled by an onshore discretionary trust. While the business is not run on a day-to-day basis by Hammond, he is still the main beneficiary.
The Times reported “A housebuilding business founded by Philip Hammond has been accused of sitting on an undeveloped plot of land which has been granted planning permission for four new homes. Castlemead Limited, which was co-founded by the Chancellor in 1984, builds new homes and doctor’s surgeries. It has been reported that Castlemead Group, which is majority-owned by the company, was granted permission to build four homes in north Wales in June 2010 on the condition work on the site would begin within five years.
“Hammond resigned as a director of the company in 2010, but his sole entry in the most recent House of Commons’ MPs’ register makes reference to the fact that he is “a beneficiary of a trust which owns a controlling interest in Castlemead Ltd, a company engaged in construction, house building and property development”. The revelation comes after Hammond gave an interview with The Sunday Times in 2017. in which he hit out at house builders who are sitting on hundreds of thousands of undeveloped plots of land which have planning permission for new homes.
“He said “We are generating planning permissions at a record rate. It’s builders banking land, it’s speculators hoarding land, it’s local authorities blocking development”.
He would say that wouldn’t he?