Northern Ireland

Late Sinn Féin donor who gave millions to party donates further £100,000

William Hampton, whose ashes are buried in Hannahstown Cemetery in west Belfast.
William Hampton, whose ashes are buried in Hannahstown Cemetery in west Belfast.

A late Sinn Féin supporter who has already left millions to the party has donated a further £100,000 to the party.

William Hampton from England, a former mechanic who spent much of his final years living in a camper van , is now reported to have left a total of £3.35m.

With no obvious links to the republican party, he died in 2018 at the age of 82 with a reputed fortune of around £4m that was left to him by his father.

His ashes were later buried in west Belfast in a “solemn ceremony” attended by Gerry Adams, with a memorial stone in Hannahstown Cemetery describing him as a "true friend of Ireland. Remembered by his friends and comrades in Sinn Féin."

In 2019, donations of £2m were left to the party followed by £100,000 in 2020 and £800,000 in 2021, while £350,000 was donated in 2022.

Questions had previously been raised about his mental health, with reports in 2019 claiming he had left the money “out of spite” and “to say ‘up you’ to the British establishment”.

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Mr Hampton had made his will in 1997 while living in a caravan in Co Cavan, with the executors and trustees being the IRA’s former chief-of-staff Joe Cahill and the fellow senior republican Dessie Mackin.

Sinn Féin have been contacted for a response about the latest donation.

Party President Mary Lou McDonald has previously described Mr Hampton as a “rebel with a cause” who shared Sinn Féin’s goals.