UK – More than half of the UK’s top corporate pension funds do not pay their trustees, according to a survey by the Financial Times.

The FT said it polled the 50 largest UK companies. “More than half the top 50 companies’ pension funds do not have paid trustees,” it said.

The paper said phone company British Telecommunications’ 44.9 billion euro pension fund pays trustees between 18,000 pounds and 24,000 pounds (28,000-37,000 euros). This compares with payment to its non-executive directors of 40,000 pounds a year.

The trustees of British Airways’ 15 billion euro pension are not paid anything, the report says, while non-executive directors at the airline receive between 20,000 and 40,000 pounds.

It quoted Geoff Pearson of retailer Sainsbury, whose pension is worth 4.5 billion euros, as saying: “Companies such as Sainsburys believe that trustee remuneration could attract the ‘wrong kind of people’.”

It also quoted drinks firm Diageo’s 4.9 billion euro pension fund as saying its trustees had never been paid “and they did not feel it would make them any more professional that they previously were”.

Former Gartmore chairman Paul Myners’ report on UK pensions called for trustees to be paid as part of a package of “best practice” proposals.