- Two more public buildings operating under Islamic bond schemes revealed
- 18th century Admiralty House and property in Southwark takes total to five
- Ministers accused of hiding truth on properties owned by Islamic financiers
- Buildings were quietly transferred to finance Sukuk bond scheme in 2014
- Admiralty House provided grace-and-flavour apartment for John Prescott
- It is where ex-deputy PM's affair with secretary is believed to have started
A historic building that used to house members of the Royal Family and Sea Lords is now governed by Sharia law, MailOnline can reveal.
Admiralty House is one of two more public buildings that are revealed today to operate under Islamic law following the revelations that government properties were quietly transferred to finance an Islamic bond scheme in 2014.
In addition to two Department of Health buildings and the Department of International Development property on Whitehall, the bond scheme also covers Admiralty House and an unidentified building at 4-26 Webber Street in Southwark, south London.
It takes the total number of government buildings that were transferred to fund the £200million Islamic finance scheme to five.
Five government buildings are operated under the code of Sharia law because they were transferred to finance an Islamic bond scheme in 2014
Admiralty House, part of which can be seen from this view of Horse Guards Parade, is one of the government buildings that were transferred to a £200million Islamic bond scheme in 2014 and subsequently must operate under the code of Sharia law
Under the terms of the lease, the sale of alcohol is one of the activities banned on the premises because they must conform to Sharia law.
George Osborne announced the move in June 2014 as part of an effort to make the UK a global hub for Islamic finance.
But critics said the scheme would waste money and could undermine Britain's financial and legal systems by imposing Sharia law onto government premises.
Due to the Islamic bond scheme – known as Sukuk – the ownership of the leases on the five government buildings have been switched from British taxpayers to wealthy Middle Eastern businessmen and banks.
The money raised will be repayable from 2019.
But instead of interest, bond-buyers will earn rental income from the Government offices because interest payments are banned in Sharia law.
The Treasury agreed to make the Sukuk fully compliant with the code of Islamic law to ensure investors were not put off investing in the scheme, meaning each of the buildings used to finance the products must meet the terms of Sharia law, including the ban on alcohol.
An unidentified building at 4-26 Webber Street (pictured) in Southwark, south London, is the fifth building to have been revealed to fall under the Islamic bond scheme
New home? Plans were revealed for MPs to be rehoused in a temporary chamber in a courtyard in the Department of Health at 79 Whitehall (pictured) - opposite The Cenotaph - earlier this week
It means Admiralty House - which overlooks Whitehall and Horse Guards Parade - and other public buildings under the scheme operate under the code of Sharia law.
Opened in 1788, the eight-story building is now used as government offices but was once home to courtiers and members of the Royal family.
WHY ARE WHITEHALL BUILDINGS GOVERNED BY SHARIA LAW?
It was later the official residence for the First Lord of the Admiralty, which included Sea Lords, Chancellors of the Exchequor and other members of the nobility.
More recently it was the grace-and-flavour apartment for the former Defence Secretary Liam Fox and the ex-deputy prime minister John Prescott.
Lord Prescott's affair with his secretary, Tracey Temple, is believed to have started in his Admiralty House office and apartment in 2002.
Ukip MP Douglas Carswell said news of the latest buildings to be uncovered as operating under the Islamic bond scheme is proof that the Government 'withheld the truth about the number of public buildings the Treasury has put into the hands of Islamic financiers'.
Ukip's Parliamentary spokesperson Suzanne Evans told MailOnline: 'When he launched his sharia finance scheme, the Prime Minister said he would welcome 'the involvement of industry in developing this initiative'.
'He made no mention of the fact funding would be actually be raised by handing over the leases of publicly-owned, government buildings. He's been less than transparent and the public will rightly be angered by this.'
Revelations that government buildings were being governed by Sharia law first emerged in January, when it was revealed that MPs could be forced to stop drinking alcohol if they are temporarily rehoused in the Department of Health while the Palace of Westminster undergoes essential repairs.
The building - at 79 Whitehall opposite the Cenotaph - is one of the buildings that have been transferred to the Islamic bond scheme.
A Treasury source told MailOnline that two other buildings under the scheme are Wellington House in Lambeth - a second Department of Health site - and 22-26 Whitehall, home to the Department of International Development.
Confirming that alcohol is one of the banned activities in the buildings under the Sukuk bond scheme, a Whitehall official told The Times newspaper: 'It's true.
If MPs want to use Richmond House they'd better give up any hopes it will include a bar.'
A spokesman for the joint committee on the Palace of Westminster, which is overseeing the refurbishment of Parliament, said the committee is 'aware that Richmond House is under a bond'.
Tory MP Andrew Bridgen said he was outraged to discover that parts of Whitehall was being ruled by Islamic law.
'I do find it unbelievable government buildings are governed by Sharia law,' he told MailOnline. 'I don't see the bars as being an essential part of Parliament but it's the principle that matters.
'Most of our constituents will be absolutely amazed that the principle could ever have been authorised.'
News that moving to the Department of Health premises would bar MPs from drinking alcohol was the latest in a series of stumbling blocks encountered by Parliamentary authorities as they search for a new home while a £4billion worth of repairs is carried out on the building, which is riddled with asbestos, leaking ceilings and rodents and was described as a 'death trap' by one close to the refurbishment plans.
A Treasury source has now told MailOnline one of the other buildings in the bond scheme is a Department of International Development property at 22-26 Whitehall (pictured)
Wellington House in Lambeth (pictured) was also transferred to the £200million Islamic bond scheme
The Palace of Westminster has dozens of bars and restaurants, where MPs, peers, staff and other passholders can enjoy pints for as little as £2.90.
The cheapest and quickest option for refurbishing the Palace of Westminster would require MPs to temporarily move out of the building for up to six years.
A specially-made chamber built in the courtyard of the Department of Health – just 100 yards down the road from the Palace of Westminster – is the preferred option among MPs.
Remaining close to the palace would be the most convenient option for government ministers, who would continue to work in Whitehall departments and must be held accountable to Parliament.
Moving MPs to a courtyard in the Department of Health is popular with some MPs because it could easily be integrated into the current Parliamentary estate.
Barred: MPs have been warned that drinking will be banned if they move into the Department of Health site because it must conform with Sharia law
The proposal to move to the Department of Health is among the most popular because it is housed just 100 yards from the Commons entrance and many MPs' offices are in the adjacent building at 1 Parliament Street. But MPs would not be allowed to drink alcohol in the premises because it comes under the terms of Islamic law
It is located next to 1 Parliament Street and Porcullis House, where many MPs' offices are housed, meaning many could go to vote in the temporary chamber without leaving the estate and avoiding security concerns.
Department of Health staff would have to move out of the offices in Richmond House at 79 Whitehall while a temporary chamber is built.
An independent report commissioned by Parliament estimated that the revamp would cost more than £7bn and take 32 years to complete if politicians did not move out of the building temporarily.
But the costs could be halved to an estimated £3.5billion and take just six years if MPs and peers agree to a temporary new home.
A Treasury spokesperson said: 'As the government set out clearly in 2014, three government buildings are being used to underpin the government's Sukuk bond, Richmond House, 22-26 Whitehall and Wellington House.
'As with many other government buildings, 22-26 Whitehall incorporates a number of addresses including Admiralty House.
Similarly, Wellington House incorporates 4-26 (even numbers) Webber Street.
This is all clearly set out in the titles of the properties held at the Land Registry.'