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Carrie Symonds, a network of family wealth and a charity investigation

Behind the Aspinall Foundation is a history of power, riches and links to the Tory party

When Carrie Symonds was welcomed to her job at the wildlife conservation charity the Aspinall Foundation back in January, her new boss gushed that she had arrived at an “exciting time” for the organisation. Symonds, said Damian Aspinall, would be be a “huge asset to us”.

Coverage of Boris Johnson’s fiancee’s appointment as head of communications focused on her well-publicised love of animals – useful, given the foundation’s charitable mission. It oversees Howletts and Port Lympne wildlife parks in Kent, home to exotic threatened species including rhinos, elephants, gorillas and cheetahs, which are prepared for a return to the wild in Africa.

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