Over the weekend, Nigel Farage met Boris Johnson groupies Priti Patel MP and Ian Paisley MP of the DUP, allegedly to discuss an electoral pact aimed at delivering Brexit and blocking the Labour Party from electoral success.
The private members club where they met, 5 Hertford Street, has a history of euroscepticism and may have provided the perfect foundations for their plotting.
What is 5 Hertford Street?
Located in Mayfair, London, 5 Hertford Street spans five floors and is made up of four restaurants, four bars, a private dining room, a cigar shop and a courtyard and roof terrace, providing a playground for the rich and famous from Monday to Saturday.
With a joining fee of £1,200 and £1,500 annually thereafter, and with a gin and tonic reportedly costing £20.50, it is no local boozer, posing questions about Farage’s ‘man of the people’ facade. In May, the club’s staff protested the exclusive club over “poverty pay” rates.
Shrouded in secrecy, the club’s Instagram account is private, but insiders have claimed that it is decorated with photos of Margaret Thatcher; an interior design nightmare.
Who owns 5 Hertford Street?
5 Hertford Street is owned by Robin Birley, a businessman with a track record of funding eurosceptic causes.
He founded the Referendum Party in the 1990s, a precursor to UKIP that advocated for a referendum on Britain’s membership of the EU and has subsequently donated funds to Farage and UKIP. Surely Farage can demand a discount on his membership?
Birley’s half-brother is Conservative MP Zac Goldsmith and he was involved behind the scenes during the 2016 Referendum, donating money to both the official Vote Leave group and the Farage-led Leave.EU campaign.
Who goes to 5 Hertford Street?
5 Hertford Street attracts a wide celebrity clientele, with famous figures such as Lupita Nyong’o, George and Amal Cooney, Mick Jagger and Leonardo DiCaprio among its regulars. Prince William and Princess Eugenie have also been known to visit the club.
Scram‘s moles say Arron Banks’ sidekick and communications director for Leave.EU Andy Wigmore dines at the club regularly. A few days ago, Wigmore shared a photo describing the venue as “Brexit HQ”.
We can’t quite imagine Farage sharing a pint with DiCaprio and we certainly don’t want to picture him on the dancefloor with Jagger.