UK
27/10/2015 10:31 GMT | Updated 27/10/2015 10:59 GMT

Andrew Lloyd Webber 'Did Not Claim Expenses' To Travel From New York For Tax Credits Vote

Composer and Conservative peer Andrew Lloyd-Webber has denied allegations he claimed for the cost of a plane ticket from New York to London to make a crucial vote in Parliament and try to avert an embarrassing defeat for the Government.

The Lord came under fire on Tuesday for reportedly being "desperately" drafted in to prevent a Labour amendment that would mitigate the effects of tax credit cuts, having flown across the Atlantic to attend the previous night's crucial ballot.

Lloyd Webber was named by The Sunday Times Rich List as the country's second-highest net worth Briton - at a cool £650 million - but was accused by some pundits of voting to make "the poor poorer".

But speaking to The Huffington Post UK, a spokeswoman for the Conservative peer, who had not voted in the Lords since 2013, defended backing proposed cuts to low-wage earners' subsidies.

“Andrew Lloyd Webber flew back from New York at his own expense to attend the opening night of Cats at the London Palladium. He is also working with the cast today," she said.

"Coming back to London allowed him to vote in the House of Lords last night."

Claims circulating on social media were also admonished, after many took to Twitter to allege the peer planned to claim the cost of his flight on taxpayers' expenses.

"He has never claimed expenses from the House of Lords," Lloyd-Webber's spokeswoman stated.

"He voted last night because he feels that it is important for democracy that the House of Lords should not override decisions made by the elected House of Commons.

"While there are important constitutional issues concerning the House of Lords, Andrew is pleased that the chancellor, George Osborne, is reviewing the tax credits situation."

The peer's spokeswoman also added in response to claims had special tax-exempt 'non-dom' status: "It is well known that Andrew is a UK resident and has never held non-domicile status. All of his business activities are based in the UK."