Angela Rayner could face police investigation over council house row

Angela Rayner made a £48,500 profit on her former council house in 2015
Angela Rayner made a £48,500 profit on her former council house in 2015 - NIGEL HOWARD

Angela Rayner could face a police investigation over a council house row after a Tory MP reported her to Greater Manchester Police.

Ms Rayner, the deputy Labour leader, is accused of providing false information about her living circumstances before she sold her former council home.

James Daly, the Conservative MP for Bury North, has written to Greater Manchester Police to demand an investigation after Ms Rayner appeared to give two different addresses in official documents.

The claim is contained in Red Queen? The Unauthorised Biography of Angela Rayner, a new book by Lord Ashcroft.

In his letter to police, Mr Daly said: “There is a strong public interest in looking into this matter.”

The book states that documents show Ms Rayner bought a former council house in Stockport, Greater Manchester, under the right to buy scheme in 2007. She sold it eight years later, making a £48,500 profit.

Lord Ashcroft’s book raises questions about where Ms Rayner lived during that time.

Under electoral rules, voters are expected to register with their local council at their permanent home address. Anyone who knowingly provides false information about the address they are registered to vote at could face conviction and a prison sentence.

Official documents show that Ms Rayner was registered on the electoral roll at the former council house on Vicarage Road for five years after she married Mark Rayner in 2010.

Despite them being newlyweds, her husband was listed elsewhere – a house on Lowndes Lane, just over a mile away, which had also been bought under the right to buy scheme.

When Ms Rayner re-registered the births of her two youngest children that same year, she gave her address as Lowndes Lane. It is not clear, therefore, where she was living after her marriage.

The Mail on Sunday interviewed neighbours of both properties, who claimed Ms Rayner moved out of Vicarage Road and into Lowndes Lane in 2009.

Lord Ashcroft’s book says that one neighbour had claimed that her brother, Darren, had moved in after she moved out when her two youngest children were born.

A neighbour on Lowndes Lane said she and her husband had lived there with their children from the summer of 2009.

Ms Rayner, who is also the shadow housing secretary, has been accused of “pulling up the ladder” for other social housing tenants as she has vowed to review the policy if Labour wins the election.

In a post on X, formerly Twitter, on Sunday, Ms Rayner accused Lord Ashcroft of taking an “unhealthy interest in my family”. The statement did not clarify details of her living arrangements at the time.

A Labour spokesman said: “Angela, who had an older child from a previous relationship, and her husband maintained their existing residences before moving into their shared marital home.

“Their son was born just 23 weeks into her pregnancy and spent eight months in intensive care, requiring ongoing support from a wide network of friends and family, including Angela’s brother. Beyond the smears, there is no suggestion any rules have been broken.

“Angela was registered to vote at the home she owned and lived in. The Tories are once again wasting everyone’s time with political game-playing.”

A spokesman for the Electoral Commission said: “Normally, a person is resident at an address if it is their permanent home address. Whether someone is eligible to be on the register at an address is for the relevant electoral registration officer.

“It is an offence to knowingly provide false information in the voter registration application form. If convicted, a person may be imprisoned for up to six months and/or face an unlimited fine. This would be a matter for the police to investigate.”

Stockport council did not respond to a request for comment on Sunday.