Legal claim filed by construction workers’ union Ucatt against its former boss

Former Ucatt head Alan Ritchie has denied any wrongdoing as it emerged he is being taken to court by the union over allegations surrounding prior expenses claimed by him.

A claim has been filed by Ucatt’s lawyers and is in the court listings awaiting a hearing date, likely to be early next year.

A statement from Ritchie’s lawyers said he “wholeheartedly denies the allegations made against him” and that he was “confident he will succeed in clearing his name in court.”

Ritchie, who resigned from Ucatt last year after being barred from standing for re-election, said this week: “My lawyers are talking to the union’s lawyers. I’ve done nothing wrong.”

When Ritchie was elected general-secretary of the union, he continued to live in Glasgow and commuted weekly to Ucatt’s London headquarters, claiming the travel costs and accommodation on his expenses.

Ritchie said that his expenses were approved for seven years before the union suddenly said the claims were against the rules.

He said: “I had an agreement with the previous general-secretary that I would have an accommodation allowance of £48 per night during the week when I stayed in London and that the union would pay for my travel to and from Glasgow.

“The accountants signed off on all my expenses every year.”

Ucatt declined to comment.