Quango redundancy deals 'cost £20m'

The Government has so far paid more than £20 million in one-off redundancy payments as part of the "bonfire of the quangos", figures have revealed.

The statistics, obtained by the BBC under the Freedom of Information Act, showed there have been almost 1,000 redundancies from 29 of the 481 public bodies being wound down in cost cutting measures.

One employee from The Crown Prosecution Service was paid £200,000, according to the data.

The Government has announced that 192 quangos will be abolished and a further 289 changed by merging them with other groups.

Ministers hope to save £1bn a year from the closures from 2014 and claim the move will also improve local accountability. Labour claim the move could end up costing more than it saves.

Quangos, or "quasi-autonomous non-governmental organisations", are unelected advisory bodies, consumer watchdogs or organisations carrying out public services.

They are arms-length bodies funded by Whitehall departments but not run by them.

Those being abolished entirely include the Youth Justice Board for England and Wales, the Animal Welfare Advisory Committee and Cycling England.