Defined benefit schemes

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

Current service cost6.16.2
Administrative expenses1.62.8
Pension expense charged to operating profit12.318.0
Net pension interest income credited to investment income (see note 5)(14.0)(9.5)
Net pension (income)/expense (credited)/charged before tax(1.7)8.5

Defined benefit pension costs excluding curtailments/settlements included within employee benefit expense were £7.7 million (2019: £9.0 million) comprising current service costs and administrative expenses. Total post-employment benefits expense excluding curtailments/settlements charged to operating profit of £30.2 million (2019: £32.0 million) comprise the defined benefit costs described above of £7.7 million (2019: £9.0 million) and defined contribution pension costs of £22.5 million (2019: £23.0 million) (see note 3).

Included within curtailments/settlements is £nil (2019: £6.6 million) relating to the equalisation of GMP benefits (see note A5 for further details).

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

At the start of the year483.9344.2
Income/(expense) recognised in the income statement1.7(8.5)
Remeasurement gains gross of tax154.673.0
At the end of the year754.1483.9

Included in the contributions paid of £113.9 million (2019: £75.2 million) were deficit repair contributions of £103.0 million (2019: £66.1 million), enhancements to benefits provided on redundancy of £1.9 million (2019: £1.6 million), payments in relation to historic unfunded, unregistered retirement benefit schemes of £1.4 million (2019: £nil), and administration expenses of £0.4 million (2019: £0.5 million). Following the 2018 actuarial valuation, contributions in relation to current service cost remained stable at £7.2 million (2019: £7.0 million).

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

The return on plan assets, excluding amounts included in interest(131.6)58.5
Actuarial gains/(losses) arising from changes in financial assumptions257.3(160.6)
Actuarial (losses)/gains arising from changes in demographic assumptions(7.2)70.9
Actuarial gains arising from experience36.1104.2
Remeasurement gains on defined benefit pension schemes154.673.0

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 £22.5 million (2019: £23.0 million) of contributions to defined contribution schemes which are included in employee benefits expense (see note 3).


The company did not participate in any of the group's pension schemes during the years ended 31 March 2020 and 31 March 2019.