Green told Peston he wanted former BHS staff to know how “very, very, very sorry I am for all the hardship and sort of sadness caused to all the people who worked there, and all the pensioners”.
“And I understand that Sir Philip Green had something of a role of shadow director at Everton, including having PWC conduct an audit of the club and summoning the chief executive and the team manager to BHS headquarters to discuss transfer budgets”.
He said that the dividends were proportionate to the company’s profits, adding that the retailer at the time was paying £160 million in profits.
He added: “We are in very strong dialogue with the regulator for a solution”.
Sir Philip Green has apologised for the “hardship and sadness” caused to BHS employees. The forfeiture committee makes its decisions independently although the prime minister could make a recommendation. The backbench motion calls on Green to resolve the deficit in the company pension fund while an amendment demands his knighthood “be cancelled and annulled” by the house’s honours forfeiture committee.
Green described dealing with the pension problem as “misery” and said: “For the past year and on a daily basis I, and my family, have got to live with this horrid decision and trust me these are not fun days I’ve been doing this, as you said, a very, very, very, long time and sadly it’s all suddenly sort of squeezed into, you know, the only thing in the world is BHS”.
They claim Sir Philip’s decision to sell BHS to Dominic Chappell was an “honest mistake”.
On the eve of the Commons debate on whether Green should be stripped of his knighthood, a letter seen by the BBC, criticises the chair of the work and pensions committee for repeating “a number of highly defamatory and false statements”.
Field and Green have repeatedly clashed through the course of the parliamentary investigation into the well-known high street retailer. The company went into administration 13 months later.
It stated: “The Taveta directors very much regret the bad impact that the failure of BHS has had on former BHS staff and BHS pensioners and we accept that, with hindsight, it was a mistake to sell BHS to Retail Acquisitions Limited and Dominic Chappell”.
Honours are rarely removed and usually only when an individual is convicted of a serious crime or struck off by a regulatory body.
The vote may not even get the go ahead: it still needs to be accepted by speaker John Bercow.
Lord Kerslake, who was in charge of the honours system as head of the Civil Service from 2012 to 2014, told the Telegraph an MPs’ vote would put unfair pressure on the committee and that a motion saying “there was a case to be answered” would be “more appropriate”.