MPs paid £10.5m 'golden goodbye'

MPs who retired or lost their seats at last month's general election are to receive "golden goodbyes" totalling almost £10.5m.

Each of the 218 MPs who left Parliament is entitled to taxpayer-funded resettlement grants of between £32,383 and £64,766.

The amount varies according to length of service and age, with former MPs aged 55 to 64 and with 15 years in the Commons entitled to the maximum amount.

Those in line for the full windfall include former Labour ministers Stephen Byers and Geoff Hoon, who faced accusations of exploiting their ministerial experience to gain lobbying work, and Andrew MacKay, who stood down as a Tory MP over his expenses.

John O'Connell, policy analyst at the Taxpayers' Alliance, which carried out the research, said: "This vast sum of money will be frustrating for taxpayers, particularly after the expenses scandal."