The first congestion charge in the UK was a much smaller £2 million scheme which has been running in Durham since 2002, however the London scheme was the first large-scale implementation. Following implementation the Institute for Public Policy Research, a left-wing think tank, to call for similar schemes to be rolled out across the country. However, in November 2003, Secretary of State for Transport Alistair Darling said that despite apparent initial interest from many city councils, including those of Leeds, Cardiff, Manchester, Birmingham and Bristol, no city apart from Edinburgh had yet approached the Government for assistance in introducing a charge. Edinburgh City Council It seems unlikely that Edinburgh will introduce a scheme any time soon, after a postal referendum showed that almost 75% of voters in Edinburgh opposed congestion charging. Unlike in London, where Ken Livingstone had sufficient powers to introduce the charge on his own authority, other cities would require the confirmation of the Secretary of State for Transport under the Transport Act 2000. Manchester has proposed a peak time congestion charge scheme which could be implemented in 2011/2012. In the East Midlands the three major cities of Nottingham, Derby and Leicester are examining the feasibility for a congestion charge. The government has proposed a nationwide scheme or road tolls.
Many cities around the world already use or have used congestion charging zones including Malta, Stockholm, Oslo, Trondheim, Bergen and Singapore (the first scheme worldwide, starting in 1975).