Equitable boss shown to be New Labour donor

Newly-available information from the Electoral Commission reveals that political donations for this quarter include a contribution by Equitable Life’s new chairman Vanni Treves.

Quarterly submissions from the political parties show that Macfarlanes partner Treves donated £1,600 to the Labour Party on 3 March 2001. The donation came nearly three weeks after his appointment at Equitable.

The donation is controversial considering the recent history of the troubled mutual, which was forced to close its doors to new business in December after failing to find a buyer.

It was forced to put itself up for sale after losing a House of Lords test case last July over guaranteed annuities, which left it with liabilities of £1.5bn.

Trade union-linked law firm Thompsons was also named as a donor. Its two contributions to the Labour Party totalled £5,400.