A former Sutton Council leader who was probed over allegations of violating parliamentary code has been cleared following an investigation.

The House of Lords Commissioner for Standards has dismissed the complaint lodged against Lord Graham Tope regarding “use of facilities, parliamentary advice and declaration of interests”.

Lord Tope was questioned over the use made by PSP Facilitating Limited (PSP) of House of Lords facilities and him allegedly supporting its commercial activities.

The complainant Andrew Wilson said he had breached the rules by hosting several events, reportedly paid for by PSP, which were attended by individuals including private equity managers.

But Commissioner for Standards Lucy Scott-Moncrieff CBE described the evidence used as “speculative and thin” before dismissing the allegations in a report published in February.

Mr Wood, who made the “wide-ranging” complaint last May, said: “In particular, but without limitations, I have reservations about the support he has given to PSP’s ‘commission of inquiry’ hosted by him at the House of Lords and the report produced as a result of the ‘commission’s’ meetings.

“I have raised this issue with Lord Tope on five occasions and, on each occasion, he has refused to give any meaningful response.”

The complainant personally attended one of several meetings by the Councils Consortium Group (CCG), which Mr Wood says was to mark the 20th anniversary of PSP.

He claims this was in breach of two specific House of Lords rules – the first being members sponsoring promotional functions for companies with which they have direct financial interests in.

The second being that “no commercial promotion or demonstrating, or book or product launch, is permitted by any person or external organisation, including on publicity material for the function”.

Mr Wood also raised concerns about Lord Tope, specifically regarding the “commission’s” meetings and three “special supplements” in online management magazine the Municipal Journal.

He said Lord Tope wrote a “glowing foreword” and “clearly did so in his capacity as a parliamentarian”, alleging this to amount a breach in the code of conduct.

But the council’s former leader rejected all the accusations against him, saying he hadn’t accepted any money or incentives for either “exercising parliamentary influence” or in return for providing either parliamentary advice or services.

Alongside denying he had a direct financial interest in PSP beyond his consultancy role, which he has previously registered, he insists the House of Lords was only used to discuss and develop public policy matters and not for commercial or promotional purposes.

In her report, the Commissioner for Standards said: “The complainant’s evidence is, in my view, speculative and thin, but I deemed it appropriate under the circumstances to put the allegations to Lord Tope.

“His response dealt comprehensively with the allegations and I have unearthed no reason to believe that Lord Tope’s very clear and straightforward responses to the allegations are false.

“In light of this, I have not deemed it necessary to take matters any further.”

Lord Tope served as Sutton Council's leader for 13 years, between 1986 and 1999.

You can read the full report here.