Liberator Building Society scandal, in which the Liberal Party MP Jabez Balfour was exposed as running several fraudulent companies to conceal financial losses. Balfour fled to Argentina, but was eventually arrested and imprisoned.
Profumo Affair (1963): Secretary of State for War John Profumo had an affair with prostitute Christine Keeler (to whom he had been introduced by pimp and drug-dealer Stephen Ward) who was having an affair with a Soviet spy at the same time.
"Rinkagate": the Thorpe affair. Liberal Party leader Jeremy Thorpe was arrested and tried for allegedly paying a hitman to murder his lover, model Norman Scott, while walking his dog on Exmoor; the hitman only shot the dog, Rinka. Thorpe was forced to resign due to his clandestine gay affairs, but was acquitted of conspiracy to murder.
Al Yamamah contract alleged to have been obtained by bribery (1985)
Westland affair (1986): The Defence Secretary, Michael Heseltine resigned from his Cabinet job in a disagreement with Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher over the Westland affair. Heseltine walked out of a meeting at Number 10 concerning his views on the future of the Westland helicopter company were being ignored at the time.
Squidgygate, the covert leaking of a bugged phone call between the Princess of Wales and James Hewitt, although the phrase originally referred to the exposure of the Princess's extramarital affair (1992)
Back to Basics, a government policy slogan portrayed by opponents and the press as a morality campaign to compare it with a contemporaneous succession of sex scandals in John Major's government which led to the resignation of Tim Yeo and the Earl of Caithness, among others (1994)
Jonathan Aitken and the Paris Ritz Hotel bill allegations, and his subsequent conviction for perjury after his failed libel action against The Guardian, resulting in Aitken being only the third person to have to resign from the Privy Council in the 20th century. (1995)
Bernie Ecclestone was involved in a political scandal when it transpired he had given the Labour Party a million pound donation – which raised eyebrows when the incoming Labour government changed its policy to allow Formula One to continue being sponsored by tobacco manufacturers. The Labour Party returned the donation when the scandal came to light. (1997)
Conservative MP Jerry Hayes was "outed" as a homosexual by the News of the World with the headline "TORY MP 2-TIMED WIFE WITH UNDER-AGE GAY LOVER". Hayes had met Young Conservative Paul Stone at the 1991 Conservative conference and that same evening, "committed a lewd act which was in breach of the law at the time". Stone had been 18 at the time, whilst the legal age for homosexual sex in 1991 was 21. He had previously supported Section 28 and other anti-gay legislation. (1997)
Keith Vaz, Peter Mandelson and the Hinduja brothers. Mandelson forced to resign for a second time due to misleading statements. (2001)
Jo Moore, within an hour of the September 11 attacks, Moore sent an email to the press office of her department suggesting: It's now a very good day to get out anything we want to bury. Councillors' expenses? Although prior to the catastrophic collapse of the towers, the phrase "a good day to bury bad news" (not actually used by Moore) has since been used to refer to other instances of attempting to hide one item of news behind a more publicised issue.
In April 2004, Beverly Hughes was forced to resign as minister for Immigration, Citizenship and Counter Terrorism when it was shown that she had been informed of procedural improprieties concerning the granting of visas to certain categories of workers from Eastern Europe. She had earlier told the House of Commons that if she had been aware of such facts she would have done something about it.
In March 2006 it emerged that the Labour Party had borrowed millions of pounds in 2005 to help fund their general election campaign. While not illegal, on 15 March the Treasurer of the party, Jack Dromey stated publicly that he had neither knowledge of or involvement in these loans and had only become aware when he read about it in the newspapers. A story was running at the time that Dr Chai Patel and others had been recommended for life peerages after lending the Labour party money. He called on the Electoral Commission to investigate the issue of political parties taking out loans from non-commercial sources. See Cash for Peerages.
Cash for Honours (2006). Following revelations about Dr Chai Patel and others who were recommended for peerages after lending the Labour party money, the Treasurer of the party, Jack Dromey said he had not been involved and did not know the party had secretly borrowed millions of pounds in 2005. He called on the Electoral Commission to investigate the issue of political parties taking out loans from non-commercial sources.
In November 2007, it emerged that more than £400,000 had been accepted by the Labour Party from one person through a series of third parties, causing the Electoral Commission to seek an explanation.Peter Watt resigned as the General Secretary of the party the day after the story broke and was quoted as saying that he knew about the arrangement but had not appreciated that he had failed to comply with the reporting requirements.
Derek Conway (2008). Conservative Party MP found to have reclaimed salaries he had paid to his two sons who had in fact not carried out the work to the extent claimed. Ordered to repay £16,918, suspended from the House of Commons for 10 days and removed from the party whip.
United Kingdom parliamentary expenses scandal (2009), following the disclosure of widespread actual and alleged misuse of the permitted allowances and expenses claimed by Members of Parliament and attempts by MPs and peers to exempt themselves from Freedom of Information legislation.
The Iris Robinson scandal in which First Minister of Northern IrelandPeter Robinson stepped aside for six weeks in January 2010 following revelations of his wife’s involvement in an extramarital affair, her attempted suicide and allegations that he had failed to properly declare details of loans she had procured for her lover to develop a business venture.
On 29 May 2010 Chief Secretary to the TreasuryDavid Laws resigned from the Cabinet and was referred to the Parliamentary Commissioner for Standards after The Daily Telegraph newspaper published details of Laws claiming around £40,000 in expenses on a second home owned by a secret partner between 2004 and 2009, whilst House of Commons rules have prevented MPs from claiming second home expenses on properties owned by a partner since 2006. By resigning Laws became the shortest serving Minister in modern British political history with less than 18 days service as a Cabinet Minister.
In April 2012, Conservative Party MP and culture secretary Jeremy Hunt came under pressure to resign as a result of his closeness to Rupert Murdoch's media empire and alleged corruption in dealing with Murdoch's bid for News Corporation's takeover of BSkyB.
In October 2012, Andrew Mitchell resigned from his post as Chief Whip following allegations made about his conduct during an altercation with police at Downing Street on 19 September, the incident becoming known as "plebgate".
In September 2015, Lord Ashcroft published a biography of David Cameron, which suggested that the then Prime Minister took drugs regularly and performed an "outrageous initiation ceremony" which involved inserting "a private part of his anatomy” into the mouth of a dead pig during his time in university. This became known as "piggate". It also led to questions about the Prime Minister's honesty with party donor's known tax statuses as Lord Ashcroft suggested he had openly discussed his non-dom status with him in 2009, earlier than previously thought.
On 6 July 2016, the Iraq Inquiry (also known as the Chilcot Inquiry) was published. It described several questions about the grounds upon which the Blair government had allied itself with the US in invading Iraq in 2003.
In 2017 the contaminated blood scandal in which many Haemophiliacs died from infected Factor medicine, hit the headlines and Parliament with allegations of a "industrial scale" criminal cover-up. MP Ken Clarke retracted remarks from his autobiography relating to the scandal and a Public Inquiry is now underway.
Jeremy Hunt property scandal – in April 2018, The Daily Telegraph reported that Hunt breached anti-money laundering legislation by failing to declare his 50 per cent interest in a property firm. The Guardian reported that Hunt was able to buy seven luxury flats at Alexandra Wharf, Southampton, with the help of a bulk discount from property developer and Conservative donor Nicholas James Roach.