The Financial Times reports today that the prime minister’s aspirations for a tunnel or bridge between Scotland and Northern Ireland had “fallen victim to a crackdown” as the Treasury struggles to control public finances.
The prime minister had previously instructed Network Rail chairman Sir Peter Hendy to consider the idea of an Irish Sea link in his review of the UK transport infrastructure.
However, a government official has briefed the FT that the £15bn+ project was “dead, at least for now”.
Dominic Cummings, the prime minister’s former chief adviser, described it in July as “the world’s most stupid tunnel”.
According to the Office for National Statistics, public sector net debt was £2,216 billion at the end of July 2021 or around 98.8% of GDP, the highest ratio since the 99.5% recorded in March 1962.