Caroline Lucas investigated over fundraiser offering Commons tour

Ms Lucas has denied wrongdoing

Wednesday, February 19, 2020

Former leader of the Green Party Caroline Lucas is being investigated for allegedly breaking House of Commons rules by charging money for a tour of Parliament.

The Brighton Pavilion MP has denied wrongdoing after the enquiries by the Parliamentary Commissioner of Standards came to light.

An online fundraiser by her local party in the run-up to the December general election offered a 30-minute tour guided by Ms Lucas as a “perk” of donating, putting its worth at £150.

Ms Lucas said in a statement: “I’m aware that a case against me has been brought to the commissioner, and an investigation is currently under way.

“I do not believe I have done anything wrong.

“I have been advised that the commissioner’s investigations are confidential so it would not be appropriate for me to say anything more at this time.”

This offer appeared on the Brighton and Hove Green Party fundraiser

According to Ms Lucas’s local newspaper, the offer sparked complaints to the commissioner, with one Hove resident describing it as “unethical”.

Stuart Bower, 69, said: “Charging a fee and boosting your income to take people around the House of Commons is bringing the office into disrepute.” 

However, Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards Kathryn Stone responded to Mr Bower to say she was not launching an inquiry into his complaint because “an overlapping matter is already under inquiry”, the Argus reported.

Ms Stone’s office would not confirm or deny that the investigation had been launched.

Guided tours of Parliament can be booked online at a price of £26.50 for adults, but UK residents can arrange free tours by contacting their constituency MP.

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