Dirty dealings in Ealing? HSBC not far behind.

I have written about Sir Sherard Cowper-Coles (above) before. Wherever there is corruption involving HSBC he is not far from the scene. He is widely thought to have been instrumental in halting a Serious Fraud Office investigation into the al Yamamah/BAE Systems arms bribes scandal, when he has UK Ambassador to Saudi Arabia. He then found a job with BAE Systems.

Cowper-Coles is now Group Head of Government Affairs at HSBC Bank and Director of HSBC Bank Egypt. This is no doubt very useful to the government given the amount of corruption surrounding the UK Government’s attempts to bribe Saudi oil giant Saudi Aramco to list its first IPO on the London Stock Exchange.

Cowper-Coles is also a shareholder in Farmdrop Limited, a company which supplies groceries to the catering industry, together, it would appear, with other members of his family

Listed at Companies House as a “Person of Significant Control” of  Farmdrop Limited is a Cayman Island based limited partnership

What is the significance of this? Farmdrop are suppliers to Social Pantry, a company whose sole director is Alexandra Head.

I am told that Sherard Cowper-Coles’s son, Myles worked at Farmdrop. He is friends with Alex Head, as interactions on social media show.

Alex Head is the daughter of Rupert Head, an old friend of Sherard Cowper-Coles from his days in Saudi Arabia:

Sir Gerard Cowper-Coles is also Chair of the Trustees of Pitzhanger Manor and Gallery Trust (PMGT) in Walpole Park in the London Borough of Ealing, as is Julian Bell, Leader of Ealing Council. PMGT, a charity banks with HSBC. The Manor has recently undergone refurbishment.

In Walpole Park was a cafe, Spencer’s Cafe, run by Alan Dillon and his partner Sarah. Alan had run the cafe successfully for 10 years, and had built up the business which is a very popular local amenity. However, Ealing Council decided to put the running of the cafe and another restaurant within the park out to tender. Alan submitted his tender, but without being told of the result, discovered that he had been unsuccessful when the second tender process took place. Thousands of people have signed a petition to save Spencer’s Cafe.

The winner of the tender was Social Pantry.

Social Pantry is bankrolled by Cowper-Coles’s bank HSBC, who have a fixed and floating charge over all assets of the company:

Cowper-Coles has written of the appointment:

Alan Dillon hopes to mount a legal challenge to the appointment of Social Pantry, which certainly looks highly suspicious and there are conflicts of interest abounding.

Here is a link to Alan’s crowdfunding page, please consider supporting his case.