Pay gap widest in wealthiest parts of country, says ONS

The pay gap between the richest and poorest is widest in the wealthiest parts of the UK, official research showed today.

London had the highest levels of income of any region, the Office for National Statistics said. However, the capital had the highest proportion of individuals in both the highest and lowest 20 per cent income group after taking account of housing costs in the 2003/04 financial year.

The report revealed a similar pattern with the gender pay gap. The earnings divide between the sexes was wider in affluent south-east England than in poorer areas such as Northern Ireland.

In London, men earn £790 and women £567 on average, creating a gap of £223. In Northern Ireland, the gap was just £85 and in the North-east £105.

The findings were published in the latest edition of Regional Trends, an ONS report that paints a snapshot picture of British households.

The report confirmed a North-South divide in house prices but showed that the disparities were even greater within regions.

While the gap between the average price in the north-west and north-east of England was just £9,000, there was a huge range within the north-west region.

House prices in Macclesfield, a favoured spot for Premiership footballers and pop stars, were more than £230,000 - two and a half times the average in Blackburn, which was affected by racial tension, at £85,000 in 2004.

London has the most expensive average house price (£275,000), followed by the South- east (£228,000). Outside these two regions, average property prices were less than £200,000 in the rest of the UK.

Total household expenditure per person was highest in the South-east at £204 per week, with London £10 below this.

The largest single item in most areas was transport, accounting for 13 to 16 per cent of households' budgets, ranging from £47 to more than £73 per week. Wales, the North-east and North-west spent a further 15 per cent of the weekly budget on recreation and culture, amounting to more than £50 per week in each case.

All regions, with the exception of London, spent more on recreation and culture than they did on housing. Housing costs in London were far higher than elsewhere, with households spending £20 per week above the national average.

Air travel has increased substantially over the past few years. The largest increase has been at Stansted airport where it has quadrupled between 1998 and 2004 to more than 17 million scheduled international passengers per year.

Suggested Topics
Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
PROMOTED VIDEO
ebooks
ebooksA special investigation by Andy McSmith
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating
and  

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs Money & Business

Recruitment Genius: Compliance Assistant

£13000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This Pension Specialist was established ...

Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive

£23000 - £26000 per annum + Benefits: Ashdown Group: Market Research Executive...

Recruitment Genius: Technical Report Writer

£25000 - £35000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Technical Report Writer is re...

MBDA UK Ltd: Indirect Procurement Category Manager

Competitive salary & benefits!: MBDA UK Ltd: MBDA UK LTD Indirect Procurement...

Day In a Page

Isis hostage crisis: Militant group stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

Isis stands strong as its numerous enemies fail to find a common plan to defeat it

The jihadis are being squeezed militarily and economically, but there is no sign of an implosion, says Patrick Cockburn
Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action

Virtual reality: Seeing is believing

Virtual reality thrusts viewers into the frontline of global events - and puts film-goers at the heart of the action
Homeless Veterans appeal: MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’

Homeless Veterans appeal

MP says Coalition ‘not doing enough’ to help
Larry David, Steve Coogan and other comedians share stories of depression in new documentary

Comedians share stories of depression

The director of the new documentary, Kevin Pollak, tells Jessica Barrett how he got them to talk
Has The Archers lost the plot with it's spicy storylines?

Has The Archers lost the plot?

A growing number of listeners are voicing their discontent over the rural soap's spicy storylines; so loudly that even the BBC's director-general seems worried, says Simon Kelner
English Heritage adds 14 post-war office buildings to its protected lists

14 office buildings added to protected lists

Christopher Beanland explores the underrated appeal of these palaces of pen-pushing
Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Human skull discovery in Israel proves humans lived side-by-side with Neanderthals

Scientists unearthed the cranial fragments from Manot Cave in West Galilee
World War Z author Max Brooks honours WW1's Harlem Hellfighters in new graphic novel

Max Brooks honours Harlem Hellfighters

The author talks about race, legacy and his Will Smith film option to Tim Walker
Why the league system no longer measures up

League system no longer measures up

Jon Coles, former head of standards at the Department of Education, used to be in charge of school performance rankings. He explains how he would reform the system
Valentine's Day cards: 5 best online card shops

Don't leave it to the petrol station: The best online card shops for Valentine's Day

Can't find a card you like on the high street? Try one of these sites for individual, personalised options, whatever your taste
Diego Costa: Devil in blue who upsets defences is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

Devil in blue Costa is a reminder of what Liverpool have lost

The Reds are desperately missing Luis Suarez, says Ian Herbert
Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Ashley Giles: 'I'll watch England – but not as a fan'

Former one-day coach says he will ‘observe’ their World Cup games – but ‘won’t be jumping up and down’
Greece elections: In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza

Greece elections

In times like these, the EU has far more dangerous adversaries than Syriza, says Patrick Cockburn
Holocaust Memorial Day: Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears

Holocaust Memorial Day

Nazi victims remembered as spectre of prejudice reappears over Europe
Fortitude and the Arctic attraction: Our fascination with the last great wilderness

Magnetic north

The Arctic has always exerted a pull, from Greek myth to new thriller Fortitude. Gerard Gilbert considers what's behind our fascination with the last great wilderness