Tory party deficit is cut to pounds 17.4m

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The Independent Online
THE Conservative Party is still pounds 17.4m in deficit, its annual report and accounts published yesterday show, writes Nicholas Timmins.

The fall from pounds 19.2m comes as the party made a surplus in 1993-94 of more than pounds 2m, the first after three years of deficits. A significant contribution was the redundancy package which followed the last election.

That cut party staff numbers by 50, slashed the pay bill by more than pounds 1.3m, but cost pounds 500,000 the previous year in redundancy and reorganisation costs. Sir Norman Fowler, the retiring party chairman, said spending last year was the lowest in real terms since 1979 and the surplus, in cash terms, the largest in the party's history.