How Many Wine Racks would UKIP MEP Tom Wise Need?

It was revealed by the Sunday Telegraph that Tom Wise, an MEP with the UK Independence Party, which condemns politicians for exploiting the “European Union gravy-train”, is claiming £36,000 a year of public money for a researcher, Ms Lindsay Jenkins, whom he is actually paying just £6,000. He trousers the remaining handy £30,000, which goes into his bank account and is spent largely on wine.

Mr Wise, a wine-loving 57-year-old ex-policeman, first became financially connected to Ms Jenkins last autumn when they agreed a deal in which she would be paid £500 a month to work as a statistical researcher for him. He gave her European parliament forms to sign to make her an official assistant but they did not contain the specified amount of her salary. When he applied to the parliament’s payments office to register her he told them he was paying her an annual salary of £36,000.

You may think that’s rich, considering Mr Wise’s last statement on the EU was: “UKIP are the only party who think that the whole concept [of the EU] is built on a succession of lies. They will not tell you what it will cost as they have no idea. Yet you – and I – have to pay for it.” Well more us than him it seems. There’s one burning question though – how many wine racks would you need for £30,000 worth of wine? According to our calculations, assuming a decent vintage costs around £8.00, that’s 3,750 bottles. Among the ideal wine gifts for Mr Wise therefore would be 234 standard 16-bottle wine racks.

Mr Wise, who is entitled to an annual salary of £59,095 plus a range of expensive perks, denounces the EU for being “a hideous waste of your money”. Investing in wine accessories such as a wine cooler (we reckon around 120 would do the trick) available in single temperature units, multi temperature units and under counter units would at least preserve his extensive cellar. Many feature glass fronts, so he could view his very own wine lake without compromising the wine cooler’s efficiency and minimise the running costs too.