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Night club entry fees removed from cost-of-living basket

Night club entry fees have been removed from the way the UK calculates the cost of living.

The Office for National Statistics (ONS) said it will no longer count night club entry fees as part of the consumer prices index (CPI) inflation, because the number of clubs in the UK has fallen in recent years, while many of those that remain no longer charge entry fees.

The ONS calculates CPI inflation by monitoring a basket of 704 everyday items, which are updated periodically to reflect changes in UK spending habits.

In its new list there are 15 new entries, with 14 items dropping out of the basket.

The data body also said CD-Roms and rewritable DVDs have also both been removed from its basket, reflecting the change in the way computer sales have moved away from physical products.

But the ONS added that computer software, for word processing, antivirus or web design, and downloaded computer games have been added to the basket.

Other additions include coffee pods for new coffee machines, and cream liqueurs such as Baileys Irish Cream.

CPI statistician Phil Gooding, at the ONS, said: "With the number of night clubs charging entry declining, we can no longer justify keeping these fees in the basket."

Pouches of microwave rice and multipacks of meat-based snacks to represent the market for "buffet-type food" have also found their way into the 2016 basket of goods.

Women's leggings have also been added to the list, because they are "a type of casual clothing not currently covered but widely purchased".

The ONS said ideally items in the basket must be easy to find, and should be available throughout the year.

Also, UK consumers should spend around £400 million or more a year on a product in the basket.

If UK consumer spending on an item falls below £100 million the ONS said "there should be good reason for their continuing inclusion in the basket".

The ONS collects around 110,000 individual prices each month from 20,000 shops across the UK, as well as a further 70,000 prices online.

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