Wider still and wider – England’s rail share gets even greater

England’s lion share of UK government rail capital expenditure continues to grow but Scotland’s portion has fallen over the last decade.

The total UK government capital rail spend on investment projects increased 53.5% – or 32.4% in real terms – from £5.2bn in 2006-07 to £8.0bn in 2014-15.

The figures were released in a recent response to a parliamentary question.

England accounted for £4.5bn (86.1%) in 2006-07 rising to £7.2bn (89.4%) in 2014-15. Scotland, however, fell from £613m (11.7%) to £585m (7.3%) during the same period, though Welsh expenditure more than doubled from £114m (2.2%) to £238m (3.0%).

Since 2011-12 the figures have  included local government capital rail expenditure (on Crossrail mainly).

In September 2014 Network Rail was reclassified as a public sector body, and since then NR expenditure has been redefined as government expenditure. The figures quoted for 2015-16 are therefore not strictly comparable with the previous years.

If taken on their own though, 2015-16 shows an even greater English preponderance; out of a total government spend of £10.7bn, England accounted for £10.2bn (94.8%); Wales £320m(3.0%) and Scotland, just £200m (1.9%).


Wales has performed better than Scotland in getting government support for capital improvement projects.
Wales has fared better than Scotland in drawing government backing for capital improvement projects.

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