Cardiff’s Vice-Chancellor claims from university funds for £6 taxi fare

And he’s earns more money than the PM

Cardiff’s Vice-chancellor Professor Colin Riordan has been slated for claiming taxi fares as low as £6 on expenses – and we’re the ones footing the bill. 

Figures attained using the Freedom Information (FOI) Act show that Professor Colin Riordan, who earned over £250,000 last year, claimed for multiple taxi journeys costing below £10.

He received an annual salary in 2013-2014 of £238,000 with an added £31,000 pension – considerably more than David Cameron’s salary of £142,500.

I own many books and my flat smells of rich mahogany


Between June 2013 and May 2014 Prof Riordan spent over £1000 on taxis, train tickets, hotels and hospitality and even claimed £194 for an overnight stay in London in October 2013.

A month later in November 2013, Wales’ leading university using university funds shelled out £266.50 for two nights in London and later £109 for a night in March 2014.

This comes after members of the University and College Union walked out last year after claiming vice chancellors had benefited from an average pay rise of 5.1% whereas staff suffered a 13% pay cut.

A spokesman from Cardiff University said: “All expenses claims and payments made by senior members of the University are in accordance with the University’s financial regulations which are reviewed and approved annually by the University Council.”

Another said: “It is vital the vice-chancellor represents Cardiff University at major meetings in Wales, the UK and internationally.”

When asked about one of the larger claims he said: “The claim relates to an unplanned overnight stay due to and meeting and dinner of the Rusell Group in London.”

“All of the vice-chancellor’s accommodation is usually booked well in advance to ensure the most cost-effective booking.”

Lee Canning, Wales coordinator for the Tax Payer’s Alliance told Wales online”: These expenses don’t appear to be incredibly excessive. However most tax payers would agree that £252,000 is more than enough and an individual on that salary doesn’t need to claim £6 from university funds for a taxi ride.”

In an annual survey, the Times Higher Education magazine listed Prof Riordan as one of Wales’ highest earners.