18 Retirement benefit surplus

Defined benefit schemes

The net pension expense before tax recognised in the income statement in respect of the defined benefit schemes is summarised as follows:

Current service cost22.318.1
Administrative expenses2.72.6
Pension expense charged to operating profit26.126.2
Net pension interest (income)/expense (credited)/charged to investment income/finance expense (see notes 4 and 5)(3.1)7.0
Net pension expense charged before tax23.033.2

Defined benefit pension costs excluding curtailments/settlements included within employee benefit expense were £25.0 million (2015: £20.7 million) comprising current service costs and administrative expenses. Total post-employment benefits expense excluding curtailments/settlements charged to operating profit of £34.9 million (2015: £29.5 million) comprise the defined benefit costs described above of £25.0 million (2015: £20.7 million) and defined contribution pension costs of £9.9 million (2015: £8.8 million) (see note 2).

The reconciliation of the opening and closing net pension surplus/(obligations) included in the statement of financial position is as follows:

At the start of the year79.2(177.4)
Expense recognised in the income statement(23.0)(33.2)
Contributions paid58.939.3
Remeasurement gains gross of tax160.1250.5
At the end of the year275.279.2

Included in the contributions paid of £58.9 million (2015: £39.3 million) were deficit repair contributions of £33.3 million(2015: £9.7 million). No inflation funding mechanism payments were made during the year (2015: £5.5 million).

Remeasurement gains and losses are recognised directly in the statement of comprehensive income.

The return on plan assets, excluding amounts included in interest56.0705.2
Actuarial gains/(losses) arising from changes in financial assumptions98.1(500.8)
Actuarial (losses)/gains arising from changes in demographic assumptions(46.6)10.2
Actuarial gains arising from experience52.635.9
Remeasurement gains on defined benefit pension schemes160.1250.5

For more information in relation to the group's defined benefit pension schemes see note A5.

Defined contribution schemes

During the year, the group made £9.9 million (2015: £8.8 million) of contributions to defined contribution schemes which are included in employee benefit expense (see note 2).


The company did not participate in any of the group's pension schemes during the years ended 31 March 2016 and 31 March 2015.