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Anglian Water chief’s £1.5million pay package under fire from GMB union

PUBLISHED: 10:23 05 June 2018

Anglian Water chief executive Peter Simpson    Picture: TIM GEORGE

Anglian Water chief executive Peter Simpson Picture: TIM GEORGE

Tim George

The pay package of Anglian Water’s boss has come under fire from union chiefs as they hit out at privatised water firms’ “eye-watering” boardroom wage deals.

GMB general secretary Tim Roache    Picture: CRAIG MACLEANGMB general secretary Tim Roache Picture: CRAIG MACLEAN

GMB hit out at top water bosses’ pay, including £8million awarded to Anglian Water boss Peter Simpson in salary, bonuses, pensions and other benefits over the past five years.

Mr Simpson, last year crowned Highest Rated chief executive by job site Glassdoor at its annual Employee Choice awards after a 98% staff approval rating, took home £1.5m in 2017 alone, the union said. At the same time, household water bills have continued to rise.

The GMB figures follow a joint investigation by GMB and Corporate Watch revealed at the union’s 101st Congress in Brighton as part of its ‘Take Back The Tap’ campaign to bring England’s privatised water industry back into public ownership.

But Anglian Water said top pay was kept under regular review, and comparable with similar roles at other firms.

The average package in 2017 for privatised water companies, when salary, bonuses, pensions and other benefits are included, was £1,254,000, the GMB said.

While water bosses were paid “eye-watering” sums, consumer water bills in England and Wales have risen by 40% above inflation since privatisation in 1989, the GMB claimed.

General secretary Tim Roache claimed the situation was a “national scandal”.

“Privatisation of the water industry has been a costly mistake and these eye-watering sums are further proof the water industry must be returned to public hands,” he said.

“GMB is urging people and politicians to ‘Take Back the Tap’ and make our water services work for the many and not the few.

“Water is the most natural monopoly and should be in public hands.”

But an Anglian Water spokesperson said: “Senior manager pay, together with any performance-related bonus, is kept under regular review by a separate committee of our board.

“This is to make sure that what we pay is comparable with similar roles and responsibilities in other companies and ensure we attract and retain the best qualified people to run the vital service we provide.”

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