Cameron’s £140,000 cash for land deal?
It’s nice to have a bit of spare cash as Cameron Forks Out £140k For Tory Donor's Land
David Cameron has spent nearly £140,000 buying land next to his home from a Conservative party donor.
The Prime Minister bought it from his neighbour Lord Chadlington, who is chief executive of a public relations firm.
Chairman of Mr Cameron's local constituency association, Lord Chadlington is a political ally and has contributed to party coffers.
He gave £10,000 to Mr Cameron's Tory leadership bid in 2005, and has donated a further £60,000 to the party since.
The land was independently valued by a surveyor before the £137,500 price tag was agreed, according to Downing Street.
A source said: "It is where his drive is, so he bought it." Very nice to be able to afford £140,000 drive when other can’t afford a home, very nice indeed
His purchase was not declared on Parliamentary or Whitehall registers but it is understood the Prime Minister was advised this was not necessary as there is no conflict of interest.
There is no record of a mortgage being taken out before Mr Cameron and his wife Samantha bought the land in July.
The London Times and The Daily Telegraph said the deal is "likely to raise questions" over Mr Cameron's links to Lord Chadlington, who runs Huntsworth, but the paper added there is no suggestion either have done anything improper. (Of course not? When have any British MP’s done anything back handed or underhanded?)
However, a source close to the Prime Minister told the paper he had paid "100% the market rate" for the land.
The sum the Cameron family paid for the patch of land is not far off the current average house price - £162,109 according to the latest Land Registry figures.
According to reports, the couple own a London property worth £1.5m in addition to their Witney constituency home, which is estimated to be worth in the region of £1m.
Mr Cameron claimed more than £21,200 from the English taxpayer in mortgage interest on his Oxfordshire house in 2005-2006 under the second home allowance scrapped after the expenses scandal.
In 2009 a journalist asked Mr Cameron if he was really worth £30m - but he insisted the figure was "simply not true".