Government borrowing surged to a record £31.6 billion in November as efforts ramped up to support the economy through the second wave of the pandemic, official figures have shown.

The Office for National Statistics said borrowing was the highest November figure on record.

Central government bodies are estimated to have spent £80.6 billion on day-to-day activities in November 2020, £23.5 billion more than in November 2019.

The ONS data shows that since the beginning of the financial year in April, borrowing has reached £240.9bn, £188.6bn more than a year ago.

Recent official forecasts from the Office for Budget Responsibility suggest borrowing could reach £393.5 billion by the end of the financial year in March, which would be the highest seen since the Second World War.

Elsewhere the ONS said gross domestic product grew by a record 16% between July and September, up from a previous estimate of 15.5%.

However, this does not make up for the 18.8% fall seen in the April to June quarter, when much of the economy was shut to limit the spread of coronavirus.

The UK has also proven to be the worst-hit country among some of the world’s biggest economies.

When compared to other G7 members, the UK economy was twice as badly hit.

It fell by 21.2% in the second quarter compared to the end of 2019. Only France at 18.9% and Italy at 17.8% came close to the hit that the UK took during that quarter.

The ONS revealed that the recovery in France and Italy has also seemed to be speedier than in Britain.