Algy Cluff

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John Gordon 'Algy' Cluff (born April 1940)[1] founded UK-headquartered Cluff Oil (subsequently Cluff Resources) in 1971.

He is a former chairman (and former proprietor) of The Spectator and a UK Tory Party fundraiser.

He stepped down from his long-running non-executive chairmanship of West Africa mining company Cluff Gold (later renamed Amara Mining) in May 2012. While chairman Cluff had earned a hefty salary of $447,000, as well as a one-off bonus of $964,000 for becoming non-executive chairman) [2]


Cluff Natural Resources is an AIM-listed resource company that according to its website is:

'currently focused on unlocking the energy potential in the UK via the proven Deep Underground Coal Gasification (UCG) process which involves targeting stranded coal and converting it into syngas. The company is awaiting planning and environmental permits for eight Deep UCG licences, it is intended that the licences will be developed to production.


Cluff Natural Resources hold UCG licences for the Loughor Estuary, in Carmarthenshire, and the Dee Esturary between Wales and Liverpool. In 2013 they were bidding on a further four. [3]

The Black and White Ball 2015

On 9 February 2015, Cluff attended the Conservative Party's annual 'Black and White Ball' election fundraiser at the Grosvenor Hotel in London. The event was attended by almost the entire Cabinet, Boris Johnson and George Osborne did not attend due to the G20 event, and by party donors including; hedge fund boss Stanley Fink (Lord Fink), who wants Britain to rival offshore tax havens with an equally generous tax regime; founder of Lycamobile, who paid no corporation tax between 2007 and 2014 despite generating millions in revenue, Subaskaran Allirajah; jewellery tycoon Ranbir Singh Suri and lap dancing club owner Peter Stringfellow.[4]

One Tory donor told the Guardian he had been told if he bought a 'premium table at the event for £15,000 he would expect the company of a cabinet minister' and if 'he paid £5,000 for a standard table, he would expect a junior minister'.

To raise additional money at the event, the Party sold one off prizes. These included, a 10km Iron Man run with Iain Duncan Smith, dinner at home with Michael Gove and his wife, shoe shopping with Theresa May, a meal at the Carlton Club with Sajid Javid and a session of jogging with Nicky Morgan.[5][6]

Royal connections

Cluff hired Pippa Middleton at the height of her sister's post-wedding fame as a geothermal spokeswoman for his fledgling venture Cluff Geothermal. [2]







  1. John Gordon Cluff, 'Companies House', Accessed 7/10/1986
  2. 2.0 2.1 Matthew Allan, Cluff Gold's old boys' club days over, Investors Chronicle, 09 October 2012
  3. Lorna Stephenson, Coming to Britain: Underground Coal Gasification, New Internationalist blog, June 20, 2013, acc 17 November 2013
  4. Elizabeth Rigby Tories out in force for London fundraising ball Financial Times, 10 February 2015, accessed 11 February 2015
  5. Rajeev Syal and Rowena Mason Conservative donors pay up to £15,000 for table at election fundraiser The Guardian, 9 February 2015, accessed 11 February 2015
  6. Rajeev Syal, Rowena Mason and Robert Booth Right bids? Tory auction offers shoe spree with May or 10km run with IDS The Guardian, 10 February 2015, accessed 11 February 2015