TaxPayers’ Alliance responds to UK councils racking up £98 billion of debt

For immediate release


Responding to a BBC report into council debt that shows that UK councils owe a total of £97.8 billion to lenders, John O’Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers' Alliance, said:

“Taxpayers will feel bewildered at the sheer scale of debt that councils have accrued.

“Despite years of pleading poverty and hiking council tax, local authorities continued to throw billions of pounds at pet projects and lavish pay deals for execs.

“Councils across the country must urgently reverse this trend by cutting waste and prioritising essential services.”


TPA spokespeople are available for live and pre-recorded broadcast interviews via 07795 084 113 (no texts)

Media contact:

Joanna Marchong
Investigations Campaign Manager, TaxPayers' Alliance
[email protected]
24-hour media hotline: 07795 084 113 (no texts)


Notes to editors:

  1. Founded in 2004 by Matthew Elliott and Andrew Allum, the TaxPayers' Alliance (TPA) campaigns to reform taxes and public services, cut waste and speak up for British taxpayers. Find out more at

  2. TaxPayers' Alliance's advisory council.

  3. A recent TPA report uncovered a transparency crisis in councils in which an increasing number of local authorities were failing to file audited accounts on time.

  4. The TPA’s annual Town Hall Rich List report reveals the number of council bosses in receipt of remuneration packages in excess of £100,000.
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