A SLEW of Whitehall fat cats got chunky pay packets last year while the nation struggles with the cost of living crisis.
Nearly 600 mandarins took home over £150,000 last year – more than the PM earn for running the country.
The PM earns up to £161,401 – and the list released yesterday includes every Whitehall chief on over £150,000.
One boss, Mark Thurston, who is responsible for the delayed and over-budget HS2 project earned a whopping £624,999.
Another rail boss, Andrew Haines who runs Network Rail was paid £589,999.Another 71 members of staff at the organisation were handed the bumper pay cheques over £150k.
Meanwhile Brits using the crumbling rail network had to suffer yet another increase in rail fares – with some annual tickets up by £250.
Other top earners include Peter Denton, boss of the Levelling Up department, and MoD Perm Sec Simon Bollom who both pocketted £284,999 last year.
The total cash paid out to top mandarins increased by 7.2 per cent from just under £100 million in 2020 to £106 million last year.
Cabinet Office insiders said that the increase was down to staff from the Nuclear Decommissioning Authority being included on the list for the first time.
It’s Perm Sec David Peattie was paid just under £400,000 last year.
John O’Connell, chief executive of the TaxPayers’ Alliance, said: “Taxpayers will be shocked by the scale of these public sector pay hikes.
“While some Whitehall bosses may have earned their keep, families are being expected to fund mega salaries for mandarins while enduring a cost of living crisis and record tax burden.
“Ministers must get the civil service salary bill under control before asking taxpayers for any more of their money.”
It also emerged that ministers and top aides bagged a string of lucrative freebie tickets to go and watch England at the Euros this year.
Boris Johnson and his under-fire chief of staff Dan Rosenfield are among those who headed to Wembley to watch England in the semis and finals.
Nearly every minister at the Department for Culture and Sport – dubbed the ministry of fun in Whitehall – bagged free seats at the sought-after clashes.
At least 17 free Euros tickets were doled out to government insiders, transparency data slipped out yesterday reveals.
While ministers and officials also pocketed freebies to the cricket, Grand Prix and operas.
A Government spokesperson said: “These posts represent just 0.1% of Civil Service jobs and 44 of the 47 roles added to the list are not new jobs.
“We recognise that high salaries in the public sector must be justified and all salaries above £150k are fully scrutinised and approved by ministers.”