Alison Rose doesn’t deserve a huge NatWest payout

When I wrote in July that Dame Alison Rose’s forced exit as chief executive of NatWest in the wake of the Nigel Farage scandal was ‘unnecessary’, many readers vehemently disagreed with me. Out she went, Treasury ministers having steamrollered the NatWest board’s brief attempt to hold her in post – and a subsequent Information Commissioner’s Office (ICO) report concluded she had breached data protection laws by revealing to the BBC that Farage had been a customer of the Coutts arm of NatWest and adding the misleading suggestion that his accounts had been closed for purely commercial reasons. Bang to rights, then. Rose should forfeit the £10 million to which she’s

Letters: why AI may be a force for good

Parris review Sir: Matthew Parris (‘Coutts, Farage and the trouble with choice’, 29 July) omitted to mention the initial, fundamental and obvious matter of the breach of client confidentiality committed by Dame Alison Rose, who he says should not have resigned. This is surely the gravest offence any bank official – let alone the head of NatWest – can commit. Yet he puts her resignation down to a ‘silly media storm’, which was actually started by the BBC, to whom the client information was given. Further, his article relates mostly to the discretion which institutions such as banks have in choosing who to admit. But this issue wasn’t about a client’s

The horror of being branded a PEP

When I asked my husband if he knew what PEP meant he said: ‘It’s an emergency combination of HIV drugs that can stop the virus if you’ve been putting your todger where you shouldn’t.’ Trust him to get hold of the wrong end of the stick. To him as a doctor, PEP meant Post-Exposure Prophylaxis. But I was talking about Politically Exposed Persons – a concept abused by banks to deny people accounts, as happened to Nigel Farage. Dominic Lawson, once editor of The Spectator, wrote in the Daily Mail about his wife being refused a bank account because her brother is a Viscount – but one without a seat

Matthew Parris

In defence of Coutts

Dame Alison Rose should not have resigned as head of NatWest over the Nigel Farage affair – and ministers who forced this by flinching in the face of a silly media storm should be ashamed of themselves. In the great Coutts debate this columnist finds himself in a minority. I express no opinion on the wisdom or otherwise of the private bank’s decision to drop Farage as a client, believing this to be a private matter between himself and Coutts. I’ll pose a number of questions, but first there’s something we must get out of the way. Whether or not Coutts was wise to exclude Farage, a bank like this

Martin Vander Weyer

Dame Alison’s ousting lifts the lid on banking’s wider moral pickle

When Dame Alison Rose was a frontrunner for chief executive of NatWest in 2019, I described her as ‘sensible’ and ‘unspun’ and said I hoped she’d get the job. That view was based partly on personal impression and partly on a prejudice of mine, expressed consistently since the 2008 crisis, that women often make better senior bankers than men, being less prone to macho risk-taking. Rose has now yielded to political pressure and resigned over her role in the false reporting of the decision to ‘exit’ Nigel Farage as a customer of NatWest’s subsidiary, Coutts. But this column has never been in the business of following the baying crowd in