Three executive directors of Abbey National are in line for pay-offs totalling more than £1.6m after being part of the latest boardroom cull at the UK's number two mortgage bank. The departures include Tim Ingram, who failed in a bid to become Abbey's chief executive in 1998.
Abbey's board will be left with six executives and eight non-executives at the end of the month when Ian Treacy, the company secretary, John King, the human resources director, and Mr Ingram, who oversaw the Scottish Mutual and Scottish Provident life assurance businesses, step down.
Many in the City were surprised that Mr Ingram was leaving, including the man himself. "I've always wanted to run things for Abbey National. Yes, I'm disappointed to be leaving after so long," he said.
However, he added that the moves by the chief executive, Ian Harley, to reorganise the group were "logical", and voiced support for the non-executive directors, who he said had played "the right role".
Malcolm Millington will assume his responsibilities as head of a newly-created division focused on long-term savings.
Mr Ingram, who can expect to receive at least £445,000 excluding bonus, was among three directors who challenged Mr Harley for the top job four years ago. Another, Gareth Jones, left in October after the wholesale banking unit he headed ran into difficulties.
Mr Treacy, who had been with Abbey for 19 years, will receive at least £525,000 excluding bonuses, while Mr King, with 30 years' service, is in line for at least £665,000. They are not being replaced. Lords Burns take over as chairman last week.