England, Wales, Scotland and Northern Ireland may be geographical neighbours but they could be thousands of miles apart in terms of house prices. House prices have risen by 8.6% in England in the year to the end of January in contrast to the rest of the UK, according to research from the Office for National Statistics. Property prices went up by 0.1% in Scotland and 0.8% in Northern Ireland, and fell by 0.3% in Wales, over the same period. Various surveys have suggested a pick-up in UK house prices after last summer’s lull. The ONS said that property price rises in England were driven by an annual increase in the South East of England (up 11.7%), London (up 10.8%) and the East of England (up 9.8%). Excluding London and the South East, UK house prices increased by 5.1% in the 12 months to the end of January.