Newham Council has defended Sir Robin Wales after revelations he is the mayor with the highest allowance in the UK.

A report in the Sun newspaper claimed Sir Robin earned £81,029 in 2014/15, £1,500 more than the Mayor of Liverpool, who was the second most prolific.

A spokeswoman for Newham Council said: “We have always been open and upfront about the mayor’s allowance.

“The role carries immense responsibilities. The mayor is the principal voice for the community and splits his time between ensuring that the council is delivering for residents as well as working with partners to improve the area and advocating for Newham with government and businesses.

“As one of only 11 executive mayors in the UK, he is directly accountable to the electorate and his salary is reflective of the position’s responsibilities.

“It is a full-time role, elected by the people, with executive responsibilities greater than that of a traditional council leader. The recommended amounts for members allowances for all London boroughs, including the allowance for directly elected Mayors, was set by an independent panel established by London Councils and Newham has followed these recommendations.

“The Mayor does not take his full annual allowance but donates an amount of to charity each year.”