Discover why Robin Ellison wants to get rid of the Pensions Regulator

I’m looking forward to chatting with Robin at next Tuesday’s Pension PlayPen coffee morning.

Spoiler alert;  he wants to abolish the Pensions Regulator. We once went head to head at the DWP – I think I wanted to scrap the dashboard. I got the vote from the civil servants – Robin got the laughs. I don’t think they understood!

There is a certain archness in his approach which will appeal to those with a sense of irony.

Robin’s  a little older than me and he’s starting to take things easy.

You can imagine him, hanging out in the park, dreaming up nameplates for the bench he sits on.

Nothing’s quite what it seems when you listen to him, but when you stop listening, you realise that your mind has been nudged sideways and you start looking at things a little differently.

Which is odd, because – far from being on the fringes of pensions, Robin has spent his life within the machine. He is a character who should be taken very seriously indeed!


About henry tapper

Founder of the Pension PlayPen,, partner of Stella, father of Olly . I am the Pension Plowman
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2 Responses to Discover why Robin Ellison wants to get rid of the Pensions Regulator

  1. jnamdoc says:

    Its been said to me (by some who created it) that the TPR was a political construct, designed to protect the ascension of a certain labour leader from any potential pension failure on his way to No10…. Hence the granting of super powers (“whatever it takes”) including uniquely the ability to pierce the corporate veil and now to impose criminal charges for (and with hindsight applying) taking the wrong risk (i.e. investments) at the wrong time. When politicians meddle the negative effects usually surface long after they leave office, and can have a long term detrimental effect.

    We granted it immense powers, but with no broader responsibility. Not a good combination.

    Has it been a success?
    – the provision of defined benefit pensions to provide working people with some modest sense of security in old age – destroyed other than for civil servants
    – £600bn loss in asset values confirmed over 2022 from TPR induced LDI debacle (“wasn’t our fault the dumb Trustees didn’t understand the maths”)
    – colossal disinvestment from growth and enterprise by UK DB pension scheme, with an economy wide effect, creating a deathpool drag on growth and productivity.
    – On the plus side, the PPF funded by a levy on actual pension schemes, is now overfunded and has done itself out of job, and currently trying to find something to do for its near 1000 expensive professionals (no doubt most previously worked in the DB sector servicing schemes before TPR got rid of them).

    Not sure what its purposes is now, nor that its original remit remains relevant (certainly not useful).

    Can’t help but feel Mr Ellison will be shooting into an open goal…

  2. Martin T says:

    Hm. I think we do need a regulator to promote best practice and deter the bad apples.

    The better question is what is the aim of best practice? Better outcomes for members? Growth in the wider economy to continue to pay pensions? Promotion of inter generational fairness, boomer DB and Gen Z DC etc

    But not, I suggest the total protection of the PPF; the (near total) guarantee of DB accrued benefits whatever the cost; the fallacious adoption of transitory gilt rates as an indicator of anything long term; the smothering of innovation like superfunds and CDC; insistence on crippling recovery payments and a fast track to oblivion.

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