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Britain’s fifth richest man Sir James Ratcliffe slammed for furloughing 800 staff

Britain’s fifth richest man Sir James Ratcliffe is slammed for furloughing 800 staff at his luxury hotel chain despite £12.2bn fortune

  • Sir James’ hotel chain is using the government’s furlough scheme to pay staff
  • Secured £4million from the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme
  • Wealthier hotelier last reported to have had plans to move to tax haven Monaco
  • Here’s how to help people impacted by Covid-19

A luxury hotel chain owner has furloughed 800 members of staff despite being Britain’s fifth richest man. 

Sir James Ratcliffe, majority owner of Home Grown Hotels and Lime Wood Group, is making use of the government scheme which sees workers paid up to £2,500 a month. 

The 67-year-old is believed to be worth £12.2billion and is fifth on the new Sunday Times Rich List, joining the likes of vacuum cleaner company owner James Dyson who clinched the top spot. 

Sir James Ratcliffe, majority owner of Home Grown Hotels and Lime Wood Group, is making use of the government scheme which sees workers paid up to £2,500 a month

The hotel chain’s chief executive and chairman Robin Hutson announced the company would be making use of the furlough scheme and the Coronavirus Business Interruption Loan Scheme (CBILS). 

He wrote that the schemes had ‘prevented significant job loss’ and confirmed the company had furloughed 782 staff furloughed.

Hutson also stated it had secured four million in CBILS. 

Tory MP Peter Bone told The Sun on Sunday: ‘People will find it difficult to understand why the ultra-rich are sponging off the taxpayer.

‘Many of my constituents would think they should be paying the wages and not the taxpayer.’

The wealthy hotelier was last year reported to have had plans to move to tax haven Monaco to avoid paying £4billion. 

The wealthy hotelier was last year reported to have had plans to move to tax haven Monaco to avoid paying £4billion. Pictured is his property, the Lime Wood Hotel

The wealthy hotelier was last year reported to have had plans to move to tax haven Monaco to avoid paying £4billion. Pictured is his property, the Lime Wood Hotel 

In 2018 he attempted to buy out Chelsea Football Club owner Roman Abramovich but nothing went ahead as he was unwilling to pay the Russian owner’s valuation of the club.     

He is also seeking an emergency loan from the government for Petroineos, a joint venture between his oil company Ineos, which has not furloughed any of its 3,000 staff, and the Chinese state-owned PetroChina  

A spokesman for Sir Jim told The Sun on Sunday: ‘The group is supplementing wages and has been since day one of the lockdown.

‘Those that continue to be able to work in the hotels group maintain the facilities and kitchen gardens, producing food for local people and NHS workers.’

Read more at DailyMail.co.uk