Politics

Chris Grayling's £100k part-time ports job an 'insult' to staff facing pay cuts


Chris Grayling’s £100,000 part-time job at Felixstowe port job was branded an insult to staff shouldering pay cuts yesterday.

Union chiefs criticised the decision by the port’s owner, Hutchison Ports Europe, to give the hapless ex-minister an advisory role for just seven hours a week.

Unite described it as a “slap in the face” for staff paid by the hour who have had their Christmas bonus cancelled and been forced to change shifts to help the company weather the impact of the Covid pandemic.

The union, which has more than 2,000 members at the port, said Hutchison Ports “clearly has money to burn” if it can afford to spend £100,000 on an advisor with such a poor record in office.

Mr Grayling, once branded “the worst transport secretary of all time”


by Labour, left taxpayers with a £100m bill for ferries chartered to bring in vital supplies if there was a no deal Brexit, which were then never used.

He faced calls to resign after awarding a contract worth £13.8m to run Channel crossings to Seaborne Freight, a company with no ferries.

The Tory MP’s appointment as a “strategic adviser” was approved by the Advisory Committee on Business Appointments earlier this month, the latest MPs’ register of interests shows.

Miles Hubbard, Unite’s regional officer, said: “Hutchinson Ports clearly has money to burn if it can afford to spend £100,000 on a part time advisor who once gave a multimillion-pound shipping contract to a company with no ships and who was dubbed ‘the worst transport secretary of all time’.”

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