Suspended Assembly cost £53.5million

Any MLAs reading this should brace themselves for the onslaught – From October 2002 until 31 December 2004, the cost of maintaining the NI Assembly during its suspension has been £53.5m.The figures break down as follows: £23.2m for costs relating to members and political parties, £20.2m related to costs for assembly staff and £10.1m for property, accommodation and business service costs.

Seemingly, that’s £15million less, in the last year alone, than a fully functioning Assembly would have cost – although that’s hardly likely to assuage the critics.