This includes a £72,5000 loan which he used to buy a house – the debt was forgiven 13 years later. Mr Lavery, who was the president of the National Union of Mineworkers (NUM) 2002-2010, became the MP for Wansbeck in 2010. He was also the general secretary of the NUM Northumberland branch for 18 years, before stepping down to run as a candidate in the general election.
The trade unionist featured in a campaign video released on social media yesterday that accused the Conservative Party of “stealing the miners’ pension fund”.
The video attacked the decision to – when the coal industry was privatised in 1994 – share surplus money in the Mineworkers’ Pension Scheme between its members and the Government.
However, Mr Lavery, who is a close ally of Jeremy Corbyn, is now facing questions as to how he financially benefited when he ran the 10-member Northumberland NUM branch.
A 2017 report from the Certification Office for Trade Unions and Employers’ Associations, which regulates unions, found that the NUM benevolent fund lent him £72,5000 to buy a house in 1994.
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Labour chairman Ian Lavery and leader Jeremy Corbyn (Image: GETTY)
Ian Lavery in Labour's campaign video slamming the Tories over their treatment of miners (Image: GETTY)
The loan was made at below market rate and then written off in 2007 when an endowment policy taken out against it failed to perform as expected – leaving Mr Lavery £72,500 richer.
While the endowment fund he had been paying into to pay back the capital cost of the house underperformed, it still paid out £18,000 which he and his wife also kept.
What’s more, the report also showed he took a £89,887 termination payment from the union when he became an MP.
It added that the union overpaid him £30,600 but, after he disputed £10,600 of it, he eventually volunteered to repay just £15,000 of the nearly £90,000.
Jeremy Corbyn at the Durham Miners Gala (Image: GETTY)