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Mega-rich Rishi Sunak made a pitch to the Tory faithful wearing beaten-up shoes with a hole in the sole, while the finishing touches are applied to the swimming pool at his luxury home.

The former chancellor, who has rubbished claims his wealth means he is out of touch, was snapped with the worn-out shoe earlier this week.

It is in stark contrast to last month, when he sported Prada loafers, estimated to cost around £470, during a visit to a building site.

Mr Sunak has repeatedly hit back at comments about his expensive attire, notably from culture secretary Nadine Dorries, who praised rival Liz Truss for wearing £4.50 earrings.

The former chancellor was photographed with a hole in his shoe ( Newcastle Chronicle)

It has raised questions about whether he is deliberately dressing down as the race to be Prime Minister goes into its final days.

Political marketing expert Prof Paul Baines, of the University of Leicester, said: “Displaying wealth is unseemly in the current environment.

“It’s definitely unfashionable wearing expensive clothes while everyone is suffering, and I think he’s recognised that.”

Prof Baines, a Conservative councillor, added that Ms Truss could afford to dress “much more lavishly” – but has chosen not to.

The ongoing work at the Sunaks’ £1.5million home ( North News & Pictures Ltd northnews.co.uk)

Meanwhile, new pictures show work is progressing on a swimming pool at Mr Sunak’s £1.5million North Yorkshire home – which is being built as the nearby public swimming baths face closure due to escalating costs.

Media commentator Howard Bowden said: “Having a hole in your shoe is one thing, but if you don’t come across as authentic, you’ll never be relatable to voters.

“He’s trying to reach the soul of the Tory party, but instead he’s tripped himself up.”

Mr Sunak, 42, and wife Akshata Murty are estimated to have a combined worth of £730m, and are said to be richer than the Queen.

But Mr Sunak told the Conservative faithful in Darlington, Co Durham, on Tuesday: “I think in our country we judge people not by their bank account, we judge them by their character and their actions.”

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