‘Deeply unfair’: Londoners dominate transport spending

By politics.co.uk staff

Shocking disparities in regional transport spending will see Londoners benefiting 500 times more than those in the north-east, according to a report out tomorrow.

The IPPR North think-tank will reveal the deep imbalance in the coalition's transport infrastructure proposals, which it claims sees Londoners receiving £2,600 per head – and just £5 per head for those in the north-east.

The heavy bias of spending towards the capital will only help to increase regional imbalances in Britain, its report is set to argue.

"Skewed spending benefiting London and the south-east is nothing new but as we head towards new announcements at the spending review, these figures will strike most people as deeply unfair," IPPR North's director Ed Cox said.

"Fairness aside, the more fundamental problem is that they will continue to hold back northern economic prosperity and widen the yawning productivity gap between the capital and the rest of the nation."

The north/south divide sees Londoners benefiting 20 times more than those in the north-west. But those in the south-west are actually suffering more, with 150 times more spent on those living in the capital.

The think-tank has suggested handing local authorities more responsibility for making decisions, in the same way Transport for London currently enjoys more autonomy.

It wants extra cash for Network Rail, the Environment Agency and other bodies.

And it suggests infrastructure announcements at Wednesday's spending review, which covers the 2015/16 financial year, should be underpinned by a commitment to regional rebalancing.