Lib Dems call for duke windfall tax

The Liberal Democrats are demanding that Britain’s multi-millionaire dukes
face a windfall tax designed to claw back some of theEuropean Union farm
subsidies they receive.

The call came from shadow environment and rural affairs spokesman Chris

Huhne after the Rural Payments Agency revealed they had benefited from
hundreds of thousands of pounds paid out under the Common Agricultural

The biggest payouts went to businesses such as Tate and Lyle (£2,359,000) and

the Co-op group’s Farmcare Limited (£2,359,000).

But the Duke of Westminster, one of Britain’s wealthist men, received
£421,000 through Grosvenor Farms; the Duke of Marlborough received £473,000

though his Blenheim Farm Partnership; and the Duke of Richmond’s Goodwood
Estate Company received £212,000.

Huhne said: ‘These figures show that the reforms of the Common Agricultural

policy have not gone far enough.

‘The government should consider a windfall tax on big farm subsidies that

would claw some of this largesse back for the taxpayer.

‘Subsidies designed to maintain the countryside are one thing, but subsidies

to maintain the Dukes of Marlborough, Richmond and Westminster are quite

Huhne studiously ignored the £467,000 paid to the Queen’s Sandringham Farms

and Royal Farms at Windsor and the £19,000 paid to Prince Charles’ Duchy of


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