It’s fair to say that most of the insurance sector was firmly in the Remain camp during the EU referendum. However, there were certainly some notable exceptions – one in particular.
Step forward Mr Arron Fraser Banks, the Bristol-based founder of GoSkippy and Southern Rock Insurance – and boy was Mr Banks prepared to put his money where his mouth was.
The Electoral Commission has updated its database to show the most recent political donations and loans – and Mr Banks is commonly featured.
According to its records, Mr Banks made a £2 million loan to Leave EU Group Ltd on March 15 this year; followed that up with another £3 million on March 31; and a further £1 million on April 21. As of today, all of the money loaned remains outstanding. That’s a neat total of £6 million.
The loans are not the end of Banks’ political spending, however. The same official Electoral Commission records show that he made a £50,000 donation to UKIP on November 07, 2014; spent another £50,000 on November 20 of the same year; and donated £10,000 on December 01.
During 2015 he made a donation of £15,000 on February 09; £550 on March 27; and £16,152 on August 03. He followed this up with a £25,000 donation on April 01 this year; and a £10,000 donation on June 06.
So in total, Mr Banks has spent £6 million in loans to the Leave.EU Group; and made £176,702 in donations to UKIP since 2014. This ignores his previous spending to the Conservative and Unionist Party and a £5,000 donation made to Kate Hoey MP in April this year.
Whether this was a case of massive overspending or whether it is admirable that someone was willing to strongly back a campaign they believed in perhaps depends on which side of the camp you fall on.
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