Published On: Tue, May 22nd, 2018

ABSURD! £400m left to pay off national debt CAN'T be used due to unusual clause in will

A total of £500,000, now worth as much as £400million, was left in a bank account 90 years ago as part of a will.

But the Government can’t access the funds because of an unusual quirk in the agreement.

In 1919 at the end of the First World War, Stanley Baldwin, who would later become Prime Minister, asked for the rich to make donations to help pay off debt from the First World War.

The money, which has grown more than 800-fold, was left on the condition that it pays off the “entire” national debt.

But, the national debt is so high, that the money in the locked account has never been sufficient to clear it.

Instead, the cash remains stashed away in a specially created National Fund.

The donor of the money remains a mystery to this day.

The Attorney General, Jeremy Wright, has written to the High Court to ask the money be released to pay towards the debt and “used to benefit the nation.”

In a statement, Mr Wright said: “Almost 90 years ago, an anonymous donor bequeathed money to the nation.

“Yet we have not been able to put it to good use.

“We have been working with the Treasury, trustees, and the Charity Commission to find a solution consistent with the donor’s original objectives of extinguishing the national debt.

“I am applying to the High court to ask that the Fund is released.

“If that application is successful, the Fund could be used to benefit the nation by helping to do what the original donors intended.”

The national debt currently stands at around £1.7trillion.

The value of the mystery fund has in fact never grown above more than 0.066 per cent of the national debt’s value, but the Charity Commission are still keen to see the money accessed.

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