Blog

Search

Richard Wellings
4 June 2015
12 comments

There have been various attempts to regenerate the cities of the North over the last fifty years or so. All have failed to transform the region. As a Policy Exchange study put it, ‘attempts to...
Richard Wellings
11 February 2015
4 comments

Britain’s railways were privatised in the mid-1990s. This did not however mean an end to state control. The government tightly regulated the sector, imposing price controls on a high proportion...
Richard Wellings
3 February 2015
15 comments

London’s population is forecast to hit 10 million in 2030 and it’s difficult to see how the transport system will cope. A high proportion of commuters already endure severe overcrowding,...
Richard Wellings
16 December 2014
comments

The recent announcement that the projected cost of Crossrail 2 has risen to £27 billion should be cause for deep concern within the Treasury. Added to High Speed 2 and High Speed 3, this means...
Richard Wellings
5 December 2014
3 comments

Rail fares per passenger-kilometre are on average around 30 per cent higher in Britain than in comparable Western European countries. In addition, annual regulated fare increases exceeded the Retail...
Richard Wellings
16 May 2014
8 comments

The government spends a staggering £90 billion per annum on education. It is the largest item after health and welfare. However, there is relatively little discussion of whether resources are...
Richard Wellings
19 March 2014
comments

History is unlikely to be kind to George Osborne. Four years after he became Chancellor, the national debt has exploded, the budget deficit remains at dangerously high levels and an increasing share...
Philip Booth and Richard Wellings
19 November 2013
comments

If we look at the performance of high-tax Western countries – which includes, amongst others, every EU country, plus the US – it is grim. These are the countries which, despite their high...
Richard Wellings
4 October 2013
3 comments

The government’s deregulation programme doesn’t seem to be progressing very well. Indeed during the recent party conference season numerous additional regulatory burdens were proposed....
Richard Wellings
19 August 2013
3 comments

In a 1965 book, The Logic of Collective Action, the American economist Mancur Olson explores the impact of special interest groups on the political process. Olson’s hypotheses are derived from...
Richard Wellings
9 May 2013
48 comments

If major roads were privately owned and freed of government regulation, the setting of speed limits would be a commercial decision. Entrepreneurs would seek to attract customers to their routes in...
Richard Wellings
20 March 2013
comments

George Osborne continues to make the same error he made in previous budgets. He is assuming the British economy will return to robust growth from 2014 onwards and that this will deliver the higher...
Richard Wellings
6 February 2013
3 comments

The British government is right to be examining ways of shielding taxpayers from the costs of bank failure. However, proposals to ring-fence the retail operations of banks, and indeed to give the...
Richard Wellings
22 January 2013
13 comments

Taxpayer subsidies to the rail sector have reached astronomical levels. At £6 billion per year (including Crossrail), they have roughly trebled in real terms over the last twenty years. But...
Richard Wellings
5 December 2012
2 comments

At the time of the last Autumn statement, the Office for Budget Responsibility (OBR) was predicting growth of 0.7 per cent in 2012, followed by 2.1 per cent in 2013, 2.7 per cent in 2014 and a...
Richard Wellings
23 November 2012
2 comments

Today’s agreement on energy policy, ahead of the forthcoming introduction of the Energy Bill, shows the government remains committed to meeting ambitious targets on greenhouse gas...
Richard Wellings
19 November 2012
27 comments

According to a review commissioned by the Department of Social Security, ‘the costs of travelling to work will ... be a factor in some people’s decisions about whether to look for or...
Richard Wellings
29 October 2012
comments

  The government’s new plan for a two-tier road tax system has many shortcomings. In particular, it fails to address the economic distortions created by a fiscal framework that taxes...
Richard Wellings
22 August 2012
4 comments

Relying on growth was always going to be a risky strategy. Yet a healthy recovery, with robust GDP increases of 2%-plus, formed the core of the government’s deficit reduction plan. In this...
Richard Wellings
17 July 2012
4 comments

Is electrifying branch lines in Wales a top priority for transport investment? It seems unlikely. But then again the government’s plans to invest £9.4bn in rail infrastructure show...