Pig-Hoo-o-o-o-ey! As Lord Emsworth would say.
Grace and favour showdown looms as Speaker fights for pension perk - Times Online
Michael Martin, the Speaker of the House of Commons, is fighting an attempt by Gordon Brown to scrap the “grace and favour” pension that comes with his job, The Times has learnt.
Mr Brown — already embroiled in a pension battle with Lord Falconer of Thoroton — has now opened a second front in his attempts to end generous pay-outs to the State’s most senior servants.
Outgoing Prime Ministers, Speakers and Lord Chancellors are paid an annuity equal to half their salary — currently between £64,000 and £94,000 — regardless of how long they have served. The money, which comes directly from the public purse, is justified on the ground that it helps to “protect the dignity of the ‘Three Great Offices of State’ ”.
Tony Blair became the latest to draw the grace and favour pension when he stood down in June this year. It is believed that the annuity will form the mainstay of his income until he can start drawing his parliamentary pension in about ten years’ time.
As I lean over the gate watching my Gloucester Old Spots fighting and squealing over the last apple in the swill trough my mind sometimes is drawn to Westminster....