Tory donor failed vetting process for House of Lords

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Indy Politics

A multi-millionaire businessman who has donated more than £1m to the Conservative Party has been blocked from taking up a place in the House of Lords.

Sir Anthony Bamford, head of construction firm JCB, had been expected to be made a peer as part of the Dissolution list released on Friday. But his name was not among those given working peerages by David Cameron.

It emerged yesterday that his elevation to the Lords had been blocked by the body charged with vetting honours. According to the Sunday Times, the House of Lords Appointments Commission rejected him because tax authorities did not support his nomination. Sir Anthony wrote to Mr Cameron days before the list was released to withdraw from the process.

"Sir Anthony was approached by David Cameron six months ago to be a working peer," said a spokesman for the businessman. "However, he has decided he would not be able to devote the time to the House of Lords."

A spokesman for the Conservative Party said that the process for approving peerages was confidential. However, he confirmed that Sir Anthony had written to Mr Cameron withdrawing his name last week.