North Staffordshire and South Cheshire MPs cost the taxpayer £1.7m in last financial year
MPs claimed more than £1.1 million in expenses in the last financial year – taking the total bill for the region's parliamentarians to £1.7 million.
Annual claim totals for 2011/12 have been published by parliamentary watchdog IPSA, which was set up in the wake of the 2009 expenses scandal.
They show three of the region's eight MPs employ members of their own family to support their parliamentary work with the total bill for salary and expenses hitting £1,714,488.27 for the year.
Claims include everything from council tax and electricity bills to train tickets and congestion charge payments in London and meals for interns.
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Figures show Stone MP Bill Cash is the most expensive politician in North Staffordshire and South Cheshire.
The veteran Conservative, who is chairman of the European Scrutiny Committee, was paid £80,320 and claimed £157,011 in expenses to cover office space, staffing, travel and accommodation.
Mr Cash employs his wife Bridget as a 'parliamentary assistant' at a cost of between £25,000 and £29,999 a year.
Joan Walley also receives the higher salary of £80,320 as chairman of the Environment Audit Select Committee and claimed £134,438.97 expenses.
Staffordshire Moorlands Conservative MP Karen Bradley, claimed £152,375.50 in expenses – including the highest individual travel and accommodation bill of £35,929.86. Her husband Neil is employed as a 'senior parliamentary assistant' on £40,000 to £44,999 a year.
She said: "I try to drive to London as it keeps costs down and I never claim for just a couple of miles.
"My husband has a degree in classics and has experience of being a political adviser and writer. I needed somebody who knew the Moorlands and understood what was going on and decided there was nobody I could trust more than him."
Paul Farrelly, Labour MP for Newcastle, claimed £158,419.63. His wife Victoria Perry is paid between £5,000 and £9,999 as an assistant.
Rob Flello, MP for Stoke-on-Trent South, who claimed £131,422.36 in expenses with £28,347.65 for travel and accommodation, said: "The role of an MP is not stuck away in Westminster, you've also got to be on the patch.
"I have no problem with publication of expenses. I've always endeavoured to claim only what's appropriate."
Stoke-on-Trent Central MP Tristram Hunt claimed £143,184.56.
The lowest total in the region was claimed by Edward Timpson, Tory representative for Crewe and Nantwich, who filed £136,237.33 in expenses and costs on top of the basic MP's salary of £65,738. Mr Timpson claimed £8,787.68 for parking, rail tickets and congestion zone fees but billed nothing for accommodation as he stays with family.