(2009) New Labour M.P. Kitty Ussher

Kitty Ussher, a junior minister, wrote a letter asking if she could put a full re-fit of her run-down Victorian house on her House of Commons expenses.

Her two-page note details 12 separate major repairs she hoped to have carried out on the home in South London, including the removal of a “bad taste” Artex ceiling.

Her use of allowances is highlighted on the third day of the Telegraph’s exposé of the lax expenses regime in operation at the House of Commons, which allowed MPs to claim thousands of pounds of tax payers’ money for costs most ordinary people are forced to bear themselves.

The records reveal that Miss Ussher, the MP for Burnley, contacted the Commons fees office within 12 months of being elected, with a detailed programme of work for the property she had already lived in for five years.

She wrote: “I am writing for guidance as to whether a number of essential repairs can be claimed under the Additional Costs Allowance.

“The basic situation is that this house was relatively cheap to purchase but requires quite a lot of work.”

She then listed 12 repairs which she hoped to have carried out on the taxpayer, including a bathroom which did not “function” and “peeling” walls in the shower room.”

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