Presidents Club latest: Bank of England says charity tour was "re-auctioned" without consent

 
Catherine Neilan
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The Bank of England has distanced itself from the men-only Presidents Club charity event, insisting the item listed for auction had been donated without the Bank's knowledge.

The BoE was one of many organisations named as having donated an item to the fundraiser that could be bid upon by one of the 360 men at the now-notorious dinner which took place last Thursday.

However the Bank had actually donated the item - a tour of the Bank's premises - to the Lord Mayor's Appeal, an entirely separate fundraiser. The tour was then re-auctioned by the successful bidder without the Bank's knowledge.

"He did not consult or contact the Bank in any way before doing so. If he had, the Bank would have refused permission. The Bank has a clear policy on the charities with which it is associated and this does not include the Presidents Club," the BoE said in a statement.

"The unauthorised re-auctioning of the prize at the Presidents Club dinner was clearly against the spirit of the original donation. The Bank has therefore made clear that it has been withdrawn.”

The statement adds that the Bank "had no contact at any point with the Presidents Club or any of the organisers of the event," and that governor Mark Carney was "deeply dismayed that such an event could take place".

The government has made similar claims about the auction of a lunch with foreign secretary Boris Johnson. Answering questions on the scandal, education minister Anne Milton said he "knew nothing of his inclusion in any auction and in no way endorsed the event"

There has been widespread outrage from both the business community and cross-party politicians at the allegations made in the FT article.

Female business leaders including the CBI's Carolyn Fairbairn and Virgin Money boss Jayne-Anne Gadhia have both condemned the event.

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