Glastonbury and Lana Del Rey tickets have been revealed as some of the freebees MPs declared in 2023.
The only real way Members of Parliament (MPs) can experience some luxury “essentials” is by accepting them as freebees. All freebees accepted by MPs have to be declared on the register of interest.
According to Parliament.uk, “the main purpose of the Register is to provide information about any financial interest which a Member has, or any benefit which he or she receives, which others might reasonably consider to influence his or her actions or words as a Member of Parliament.”
Nadhim Zahawi, a member of the conservative party who represents Stratford-on-Avon and was the Minister without portfolio in the Cabinet Office, scored four hospitality tickets to see Lana Del Rey at her sold out show in Hyde Park last July, valued at over £1,000.
Thangam Debbonaire, a Labour MP and shadow culture secretary who represents Bristol West, got a single ticket to see pop trailblazer Madonna, in October last year.
Deputy prime minister, Oliver Dowden, who also happens to be one of Prime Minister Rishi Sunak’s closest political allies, register was filled with freebees from the Royal Opera House and Glyndebourne Festival of opera in East Sussex.
Ed Davey, the leader of the liberal democrats who represents Kingston and Surbiton, scored two hospitality tickets to last year’s edition of Glastonbury festival, worth nearly £2,500. Seven other MPs – including Louise Haigh, Kevin Brennan, Mark Tami, Darren Jones, Alex Sobel, and Clive Lewis – also acquired tickets to the festival.
Paul Scully, a member of the conservative party and part of the Electronic Trade Documents Bill [HL] Second Reading Committee, accepted tickets for the BRIT awards and a Billy Joel concert, courtesy of the Betting and Gaming council when he was serving as the Minister for Tech and the Digital Economy, and gambling.
Bridget Phillipson, Labour’s shadow education secretary, accepted two Royal Box tickets to see Blur play at their sold out show at Wembley. Each ticket would have cost roughly around £500.
In other news, Cher recently expressed an interest in playing the esteemed ‘legends’ slot at Glastonbury.
The iconic artist has been heavily rumoured for this year’s prestigious Sunday tea time show since organiser Emily Eavis confirmed in October that a woman had been booked for the slot at next year’s Worthy Farm party. If Cher were to play the Legends slot next year, it would mark her first ever appearance at Glastonbury.