The head of the government’s vaccine taskforce has charged the taxpayer £670,000 for a team of boutique relations consultants.
Kate Bingham, a venture capitalist married to Jesse Norman, a Conservative minister, was appointed to the role by Boris Johnson.
Since June she has used eight full-time consultants from Admiral Associates, a London PR agency, to oversee her media strategy.
According to leaked documents, she has already spent £500,000 on the team, which is contracted until the end of the year. It means each consultant is on the equivalent of £167,000 a year — more than the prime minister’s salary.
Bingham, 55, is said to have “insisted” on hiring them despite concerns they would duplicate the work of about 100 communications staff at the Department for Business, Energy and Industrial Strategy (BEIS), in which her taskforce sits.
As the PR team for the vaccine program, perhaps. There being nothing of quite such great economic importance out there currently.
As her PR team, well, perhaps not……