Questions build for the Foreign Office after spending records published

Foreign Office criticised for extravagant spending during cost of living crisis

The Foreign Office is facing pressure after some of its lavish and bizarre spending records were published. During Liz Truss’ spell as Foreign Minister, spending in the department increased by 45%.

Shadow attorney general, Emily Thornberry wrote a letter to the Foreign Office asking why spending increased so sharply. Thornberry published her correspondence on the matter after being told by the FCDO it would be too costly to answer her questions.

Payments included £10,000 spent at Fortnum and Mason, £1,850 on Soul Sanctuary wellness app and £1,841 at the Norwich City club shop, Truss’ preferred Premier League side. Payments of over £4000 were also made to ‘Finishing Touches’ barber’s and £900 to ‘Calm Over Chaos’, an adult colouring book company. Other charges included to exclusive hotels, restaurants and luxury interior design.

Truss previously came under fire as Chief Secretary to the Treasury in 2018 when she gifted a Norwich City shirt to a Cleveland football official in a bid to move the company to the UK.

Thornberry criticised the spending as excessive, contrasting it with schools fundraising for classroom equipment.