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For the first time since 1974, an independent panel has been set up to look at the whole issue of London weighting....
For the first time since 1974, an independent panel has been set up to look at the whole issue of London weighting.

Commissioned by the London assembly, the six-strong panel - comprising members from public, private, trade union and academic institutions - will consider how best to compensate for the higher costs of housing, travel, consumer costs and wear and tear in London. It will also look at how London pay differentials contribute to staff recruitment and retention in London.

London weighting was introduced in the 1920s to bridge the gap between house prices and salaries. Nowadays, many London employers pay an arbitrary level of London Weighting, while some respond to the pressures of the capital by paying in different ways, such as recruitment and retention payments and market supplements.

Chair of the panel, Bill Knight, said: 'Many people say they can no longer afford to live in the capital and this is a really big problem affecting recruitment and retention of staff in some areas of London. After a 28-year wait, a re-examination of how the 'London Premium' should be worked out is long overdue. We want our report, which will be completed next summer, to be genuinely useful to decision-makers. If we do our job properly, our report should help those who negotiate pay to set a fair London premium.'


1. The panel will receive evidence over a period of five months. A wide selection of individuals, departments, employers and expert organisations is being invited to submit written evidence and a series of evidentiary hearings, starting on 23rd January 2002, will be open to the public.

2. Members of the panel include: Bill Knight (chair), Francesca Okosi (deputy chair), Denise Milani, John Chastney, Robert Elliott and Chris Humphreys. The Panel will be advised by Geoffrey Roberts who co-authored the 1974 Pay Board Report on London Weighting.


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