I was comparing prices of some of the Nikon gear and found that on average list prices have gone up by 30% since Dec 2008. This is based on comparisons of certain items in the official Nikon UK price list.
Actual street prices have also gone up by around 20% on average.
This trend is not just true for Nikon, all camera gear prices show similar trends. The reason is of course the weak pound, which in turn reflects the state of the UK economy.
It seems that unless the pound gets stronger, the prices of lenses are not going to get much better. Camera prices do tend to drop immediately after a replacement model is announced; so if you want to buy the D700 nearer the £1535 price mark as in Dec 2008 (as opposed to its current price of £1740) - then perhaps you should wait until the replacement is announced, and buy it as soon as the price drops.