There have been ads for Edelweiss 9.8 here for around US $110, don't know about UK pricing though
Agree, get a cheaper rope for a starter', maybe a 10.something,but easily under 140 bucks if you shop around. Top rope on it, beat it up, take your starting lead falls galore , and when you've mastered your outdoor rock technique, go for a better $$ rope in a season or two.
Buy a rope that's on sale, quit worrying about it, and go have fun. All the newer ropes are skinny compared to not that many years ago. When I started 11mm diameter and 45m long was pretty standard - then 10.5 and 50 meters - now things just keep advancing. How fat your rope is won't affect 99% of the climbers out there anyway. Spend your money on gasoline to go climb more.
I got a Tusk as my first rope. I've been happy with it, and I'm glad I went with a thick(ish) dry-treated rope. I would even say IF I wasn't hiking in to some of my climbs now, a 10.2mm would have been nice.
When you're new, the extra durability and dry-treatment is nice. Skinny ropes can't take as many falls, and you're going to wear them out faster. As it's your first rope, chances are you aren't yet an expert at protecting your rope, so you'll even be putting extra wear on it. For example, I know in the beginning I was not very good about extending the anchor just right for TR.
So, the Tusk is not delicious silky honey like some of the nice skinny ropes these days, but I'm glad I got a 9.8mm.