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Fred the Shred's pension labelled outrageous' by our readers

PUBLISHED: 17:42 04 March 2009 | UPDATED: 16:15 25 August 2010

Royal Bank of Scotland Chief Executive Sir Fred Goodwin gestures after the extraordinary general meeting at the Royal Bank of Scotland headquarters in Edinburgh, Scotland August 10, 2007. Royal Bank of Scotland shareholders overwhelmingly approved the proposed 71 billion euro takeover of ABN AMRO, providing the third and final leg of approval from investors in the RBS-led consortium. REUTERS/David Moir (BRITAIN)

Royal Bank of Scotland Chief Executive Sir Fred Goodwin gestures after the extraordinary general meeting at the Royal Bank of Scotland headquarters in Edinburgh, Scotland August 10, 2007. Royal Bank of Scotland shareholders overwhelmingly approved the proposed 71 billion euro takeover of ABN AMRO, providing the third and final leg of approval from investors in the RBS-led consortium. REUTERS/David Moir (BRITAIN)

PENSIONERS have been left fuming at the £693,000-a-year pension handed to a banking boss who oversaw the crippled Royal Bank of Scotland.

PENSIONERS have been left fuming at the £693,000-a-year pension handed to a banking boss who oversaw the crippled Royal Bank of Scotland.

Pensioners in Sidcup and Bromley branded the massive payout to Sir Fred Goodwin as "outrageous" and said he should pay it back to the bank that was bailed out with £37 billion rescue package of taxpayers money.

Prime Minister Gordon Brown last week threatened legal action in an attempt to cut the pension to Goodwin, nicknamed 'Fred The Shred' under whose leadership the bank collected record losses leading it being 70 per cent nationalised.

Ellen Coulton, 82, of Vanbrugh Park Estate, Blackheath, said it was outrageous that she was "worlds apart" from the failed banking chief.

Drawing a weekly pension of £150, some £13,300 a week less than Sir Goodwin, the former legal secretary's gets around using the 386 bus, whereas Sir Goodwin was known for using a Falcon jet.

Rather than taking up Sir Goodwin's hobby of collecting classic cars, Mrs Coulton's pastime is taking minutes at the National Pensioners' Conventions.

The widowed pensioner said: "I find it outrageous. It's immoral, obscene. Scores of people die each year because they're so cold in their own homes.

"If I'd lost money at work I'd have been sacked."

Terry Murphy, the 68-year-old chair of Bexley Pensioners Forum, said: "If you visited the shopping centres in Bexley or Bromley this winter, you would see pensioners sitting on benches doing nothing just to stay warm because they couldn't afford their gas bills.

"I think it's wrong this Fred should get our money while some of my members can't afford shoes. He should give at least two thirds of it back."

On his blog, Bexley and Bromley London Assembly member James Cleverly said: "Goodwin's pension makes me angry, particularly because so many others have had their own pensions damaged by the failures at RBS.

"Harriet Harman is trying desperately to divert attention away from the fact that the Government had the chance to curtail Goodwin's pension and failed to do so. They simply screwed up.

"Fighting words are pretty useless now."

But John Flunder, a retired negotiator for the Banking, Insurance and Finance Union, said Mr Goodwin should keep his 'astronomical' payout.

The 79-year-old, of Oaklands Road, Bexleyheath, said: "I think he is a chancer and doesn't deserve it, but if it is given to him legally, then it's the Government's fault and they shouldn't snatch it back.

"When you negotiate a contract like that you must make sure to the point of being a nuisance that you have checked everything.

"If I were him I would stick two fingers up to the government and move abroad with that beautiful £600,000 a year."

jules.cooper@archant.co.uk

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