The billionaires who do pay their bills, including James Dyson and JK Rowling


As the tax row rages on, the lines between good and bad celebrity earners are being drawn and two billionaires have emerged as tax angels – paying their full share in recent years.

James Dyson and the Harry Potter author JK Rowling are two billionaires living in Britain whose tax bills are a proportionate reflection of their vast incomes.

Among the 54 billionaires resident in 2006 (the most up-to-date figures) a total of £14.7m was paid in tax. Mr Dyson alone paid £9m of that. In 2010, Dyson's company paid 88 per cent of its total tax bill in Britain, giving the Exchequer £50m.

Rowling has eloquently described why she feels compelled to pay her full taxes as a UK resident. "I chose to remain a domiciled taxpayer for a couple of reasons," she said.

"The main one was that I wanted my children to grow up where I grew up, to have proper roots in a culture as old and magnificent as Britain's; to be citizens, with everything that implies, of a real country, not free-floating expats, living in the limbo of some tax haven and associating only with the children of similarly greedy tax exiles.

"A second reason was that I am indebted to the welfare state... When my life hit rock bottom, that safety net, threadbare though it had become under John Major, was there to break the fall."