A FORMER company director is to stand trial over allegations he bribed a Buckingham Palace official in return for contracts on the Royal Palaces.

David Woodhams, 46, of Stanmer Village, Brighton, appeared at Westminster Magistrates' Court yesterday.

He pleaded not guilty to one count of conspiracy to give and receive corrupt payments and was sent for trial at Southwark Crown Court with his next hearing on August 12.

He will stand trial along with nine others. They include Ron Harper, of Sudbury, Suffolk, who worked as a Deputy Property Manager at the Royal Household from 1994 until he was suspended in 2012. It is alleged he was bribed by a number of company directors – including Mr Woodhams – for work at the Royal Palaces.

He will face four counts of conspiracy to give and receive corrupt payments.

Mr Woodhams is a former director of DWEC, a environmental control business.

The others who will stand trial are Steven Thompson, 60, Glyn Orridge, 65, and Matthew Neath, 34, all of Melton Mowbray, Leicestershire, Bernard Gackowski, 61, of Keyworth, Nottinghamshire, Aseai Zlaoui, 39, of Witham, Essex, Christopher Murphy, 54, of Witham, Essex, Harry Howard, 80, of Chadderton, and Alan Rollinson, 65, of Leigh-on-Sea, Essex.

Luke Bulpitt, from the Crown Prosecution Service, said: "It is alleged a number of company directors bribed Ron Harper in return for him awarding them large contracts for work at the Royal Palaces.

“The work was funded by the then Civil List, now the Sovereign Grant, and paid by the Government to the Royal Household. It is alleged Mr Harper was paid in excess of £100,000 by Christopher Murphy, Aseai Zlaoui, David Woodhams, Bernard Gackowski and Steven Thompson, directors of three companies, who were each awarded large contracts for work at the Royal Palaces.”