United Kingdom

Sadiq Khan demands £5.7bn bailout to keep London on the move as TfL tickets sales slump 90%

Britons have rejected Prime Minister Boris Johnson's call to work from home as it was revealed that almost two thirds of employees are still heading into the office. 

The Office for National Statistics said 59 per cent of UK adults travelled to their workplace at some stage in the week to September 27, down from 64 per cent the previous week - the highest since records began in May.   

It brings to an abrupt halt a recent rise in commuter numbers after Mr Johnson's U-turn last week on his campaign to get workers back to their offices.

The findings come after Sadiq Khan demanded a £5.65billion bailout to keep Transport for London going after he claimed ticket sales have declined by 90 per cent. 

Britons have rejected Prime Minister Boris Johnson's call to work from home as it was revealed that almost two thirds of employees are still heading into the office. Pictured: Commuters waiting for the train this morning at Canning Town

The Office for National Statistics said 59 per cent of UK adults travelled to their workplace at some stage in the week to September 27, down from 64 per cent the previous week - the highest since records began in May. Pictured: Commuters on a Jubilee line Tube today

The Mayor of London's call for more cash comes just two months after he was given another £1.6billion for the capital's transport network.  

In a submission to the Treasury Mr Khan said the funds would be needed to keep the network going for the next 18 months. 

The ONS data shows nearly a quarter (24 per cent) of people are exclusively working from home, up from 21 per cent following Mr Johnson's May 22 announcement asking people to work remotely if they can.

And congestion levels have dipped in major cities with London, Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds all reporting low levels.

The findings come after Sadiq Khan demanded a £5.7billion bailout to keep Transport for London going after he claimed ticket sales have declined by 90 per cent. Pictured are passengers on the Tube this morning 

The Mayor of London's call for more cash comes just two months after he was given another £1.6billion for the capital's transport network. Pictured are passengers waiting for a Tube at Canning Town 

In the past 48 hours London has seen just 30 per cent of its streets congested, a 10 per cent drop when measured against the same period last year. 

Manchester has 19 per cent of congestion - a six per cent drop from last year. While Birmingham has reported a one per cent drop in congestion at 21 per cent. 

And Leeds has reported a three per cent drop also with 21 per cent congestion levels.  

It comes as the Prime Minister looks to control a surge in coronavirus infections, having warned at a Downing Street press conference on Wednesday that he 'will not hesitate' to introduce harsher restrictions as hospital admissions increase.

In a submission to the Treasury Mr Khan said the funds would be needed to keep the network going for the next 18 months. Pictured are passengers on the Tube this morning

Congestion levels have dipped in major cities with London, Manchester, Birmingham and Leeds all reporting low levels. Pictured: In the past 48 hours London has seen just 30 per cent of its streets congested, a 10 per cent drop when measured against the same period last year

Manchester has 19 per cent of congestion - a six per cent drop from last year

And Leeds has reported a three per cent drop also with 21 per cent congestion levels

While Birmingham has reported a one per cent drop in congestion at 21 per cent

Official figures show exclusive remote working hit a high of 38 per cent in mid-June, though the statistics were only collected from the middle of May so miss out nearly two months of lockdown.

The latest data also reveals that 11 per cent of the UK workforce was on full or partial furlough between September 7 and September 20, down from 12 per cent in the previous survey.

This level is expected to reduce over coming weeks as the countdown begins to the end of the scheme, and with the Government further scaling back the amount of money it pays out to furloughed workers.

From this month, companies who want to furlough their staff must pick up at least 20 per cent of the bill, up from 10 per cent in September.

Mr Khan also accused the Government of cutting London out of a few of its recent spending announcements in favour of focusing on the regions

The scheme will be removed entirely from the end of October.   

Mr Khan also accused the Government of cutting London out of a few of its recent spending announcements in favour of focusing on the regions. 

According to the Financial Times, senior Conservatives hinted that the Government would most likely approve most of the money that Mr Khan requested but they may have other requirements.  

When Mr Khan was given £1.6billion in May to help keep TfL afloat, he was forced to increase fares and the congestion charge. 

When Mr Khan was given £1.6billion in May to help keep TfL afloat, he was forced to increase fares and the congestion charge

Mr Khan's submission for 'at least' £5.65billion over the next 18 months outlined that some £750million of the money would be put aside to cover the extra costs going into completing the delayed Crossrail Elizabeth line. 

It added that income from ticket sales had fallen 'around 90 per cent as a result of lockdown' and will be unlikely to return to normal levels until social-distancing measures are eased.  

And research from comparison site Finder found that every person who works from home saves £44.78 a week on average by cutting out commuting and buying lunch out. 

The company added that the result is 23.9million Brits are working from home and collecting save around £1.1billion each week.  

Mr Khan's submission for 'at least' £5.65billion over the next 18 months outlined that some £750million of the money would be put aside to cover the extra costs going into completing the delayed Crossrail Elizabeth line

Some 26 per cent of Brits plan to continue to work from home permanently or occasionally after lockdown, so it may be impossible for TfL to return to its normal level of sales.

However, the Government claims that TfL's finances were already on the rocks before lockdown - partly due to delays on Crossrail and because Mr Khan froze more Tube fares for years when he took over as mayor in 2016. 

The Mayor also called for 'urgent' financial support for retail, hospitality, leisure and cultural sectors that have been worst-affected by the pandemic. 

He went on to slam the Government for 'excluding' London from many of its recent spending announcements. 

Last month London was given just £22million of a £900million project in new investment into new housing and infrastructure.  

However, the chairman of the UK2070 Commission of business groups, universities and think-tanks said that the pandemic has deprived areas of the country hardest. 

Bob Kerslake called for a £375billion recovery strategy over the next 25 years to 'level up' with most of the money spent outside London.   

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