London infrastructure spending is 24x that of North East England

Londoners rejoice! Everyone else, despair! It has emerged that the capital receives 24 times the investment in infrastructure per person than North East England.

New figures from a report by the Institute of Public Policy Research (IPPR) highlight the gulf between investment in London and other parts of the country.

The spending figures for infrastructure in London work out at a cool £5,426 per resident, with the next closest area, the North West, receiving £1,248 per person. At the other end of the scale, the North East gets just £223 spent per person.

London’s new Crossrail project alone will receive nine times more funding than all of the infrastructure projects planned for the three regions of the North.

However, this week George Osborne said he would support a £15bn “Crossrail for the North” plan to improve transport between Leeds, Liverpool, Manchester, Newcastle and Sheffield. The Chancellor is yet to commit to any funding, but speaking to the BBC, Osborne said the move would help “to end the imbalance in the UK economy so our success is not wholly dependent on the global city of London”.

According to the Guardian, spending on rail projects makes up just 12.6% of total infrastructure spending in the North, while the spiralling costs of dealing with decommissioning the Sellafield nuclear power station makes up over a third of the £12.5bn earmarked for the North.

IPPR north director Ed Cox said: “Effective infrastructure is the bedrock of an effective and efficient economy. Transport connections, flood defences and high-speed broadband networks all allow people and goods to move quickly from place to place and for business to flourish. It is widely recognised that the North of England loses out as government spending on infrastructure is continuously skewed towards London.”

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