David Cameron faced fresh accusations of cronyism today after it emerged his hairdresser was awarded an MBE in the New Year’s Honours list.
Celebrity hairdresser, Lino Carbosiero, was handed an Order of the British Empire for “services to hairdressing” – three years after becoming Cameron’s stylist.
Carbosiero is a former X Factor “style director” and has a clientele of celebrities. He charges a whopping £90 a cut for men and £150 for women.
He is pals with Jason Donovan, Philip Schofield and I’m A Celebrity hosts Ant and Dec and his clients include Sir Paul McCartney, Lily Allen and Zara Phillips.
He is so popular that appointments can be made a year in advance.
Carbosiero, described as ‘the Godfather of hairdressing’ by Britain’s Got Talent judge Amanda Holden, became the Prime Ministers barber in 2010 on the orders of his wife Samantha Cameron.
He is responsible for switching the Prime Minister’s side parting from left to right in 2010, sparking ridicule in the Commons.
The decision to award Mr Carbosiero an MBE sparked anger, with people accusing Cameron of showing favoritism to friends and associates, appointing them without qualifications.
The PM was attacked days ago for honouring a host of other pals, allies and Tory donors in the New Year’s Honours list.
Mirror UK reports:
PR friend Alan Parker, who has holidayed with the Prime Minister and his family, was among those handed a knighthood.
Property developer Peter Emerson, who donated £41,600 to the Tories, was handed an OBE. And Apprentice star and Tory golden girl Karren Brady, who introduced George Osborne at the party conference, got a CBE.
Marion Helen and Simon Mort, both Tory activists in the PM’s patch in West Oxfordshire, also received OBEs.
Labour MP Steve Pound ridiculed the Prime Minister’s reliance on his celebrity hairdresser pal.
Mr Cameron has faced growing mockery for trying to cover up his bald patch with a “Cam-over” comb over.
Mr Pound said: “The bald truth is this – it must be a cover up. It may not be hair-raising but it certainly raises questions about cronyism.
“It’s a tight little circle gathering round the barber’s chair. We should make sure there’s no cover up – let alone a comb-over.”
After the list was published last week Labour’s John Mann accused Mr Cameron of “discrediting the honours system”.
He said: “It is also far too early for Paul Tucker to be honoured.”
Lib Dem Lord Oakeshott added: “Honours should go to unsung heroes or heroines, not Cameron’s cronies.”
Backbench Labour MP Phil Wilson said: “Cameron has given an MBE to his vanity hairdresser.
“He deserves a gong, after all it’s a tall order to make him look good.”
The accusations is also come after the Mirror last year revealed how ex-Tory staffer Laura Wyld had been installed as head of the PM’s appointments unit in control of the honours system.
The civil service team is charged with ensuring the PM’s voice is heard when gongs are handed out.
But Whitehall sources insisted the PM wasn’t involved in the gong awarded to his hairdresser.
It is understood that the citation for his award refers to his 30 years in hairdressing and to his charity work.
He raised £25,000 for the Oasis Trust by running the 2005 London Marathon.
The Prime Minister’s official spokesman said: “All honours decisions are awarded entirely on merit and decided by independent committees.”
Mr Carbosiero could have been nominated for an award by a host of his celebrity pals.
Daybreak presenter Philip Schofield said: “Lino’s been cutting my hair for such a long time now that he’s one of the family.
“He’s seen me through the brown day’s and the grey day’s and I wouldn’t trust my cut to anyone else.”
Another celebrity pal, Kelly Osbourne, said: “If you live in the UK and want a great hair cut go to Lino Carbosiero at Daniel Galvin he has been doing mine and my mum’s hair for 20 years.”
On Mr Carbosiero’s website he is described as an “internationally renowned stylist”.
It adds that “his talent, skill and eye for detail have been acknowledged by the many famous actors, musicians, models and other celebrities who have beaten a path to his door”.
Mr Carbosiero said he had no idea about the gong.
He said: “I was shocked and panicked. I didn’t expect the letter so I thought I hadn’t paid my tax.”
The stylist to the stars put his success with celebs down to not gossiping about them.
He said: “They [the clients] have to trust you. I have been in situations where people have talked about things and I’ve not blinked an eyelid,” he says. “I don’t blab and I’m respected for it.”