Special advisers earn almost £10m, with Cummings paid six figures

Government special advisers were paid almost £10 million last year, new figures have revealed, with Dominic Cummings among Downing Street staff on six-figure salaries.

A Cabinet Office report detailed the £9.6 million pay bill for the 102 special advisers – known as Spads – from April 2019 to March 2020.

Former chief adviser Mr Cummings, who is in the process of leaving his Government post, was paid the equivalent of £140,000-£144,999 – up from £95,000-£99,999 last year.

Ex-communications chief Lee Cain, who also left Downing Street last month, was paid between £140,000 and £144,999 – the same as the previous year.

Newly-appointed press secretary Allegra Stratton, who is set to front televised briefings from Downing Street in the new year, earns between £125,000 and £129,999.

Number 10 photographer Andrew Parsons works part-time but earns the full-time equivalent of £100,000-£104,999, the figures show.

Advisers Sir Edward Lister and Munira Mirza both earn between £140,000 and £144,999, while the Prime Minister's top spin doctor, Jack Doyle, earns between £110,000 and £114,999.

Lee Cain resigns
Lee Cain resigns

The UK's chief Brexit negotiator, Lord Frost, earns between £125,000 and £129,999, according to the data.

Labour's deputy leader Angela Rayner said: "Boris Johnson defended Dominic Cummings when he broke lockdown rules – then awarded him a £50,000 pay rise. Yet he's freezing pay for key workers and refusing to give our care workers a pay rise to the living wage.

"Cummings' bumper bonus is an insult to key workers denied the pay rise they deserve. It's another example of how under this Government, it is one rule for the Tory Party and their friends and another for the rest of us."