Chancellor's Spring Statement does offer 'good news' for Cumbria

Philip Hammond has said here is 'light at the end of the tunnel' after years of austerity

On the back of this Hammond then said the government expected wage growth to pick up and be "positive in the first quarter of 2019" and increase more sharply thereafter.

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However, the lack of major announcements in today's Spring Statement was applauded by Matt Tooth, chief commercial officer at LendInvest.

The chancellor had previously said, in last year's Autumn Budget, that business rates revaluations would take place every three years, as opposed to every five years, following the next revaluation.

Earlier in Parliament, Mr Hammond delivered a spring statement that reiterated his desire to see "pay modernisation" within the NHS.

Mr Hammond expressed optimism over the latest forecasts from the Office of Budget Responsibility (OBR), with economic growth ahead of target for 2018 and inflation set to decrease.

It forecast growth of 1.3% in 2019 and 2020, 1.4% in 2021 and 1.4% in 2022. Nonetheless the upgrade remains good news - as does the 1.3 per cent growth for 2019/20 which remains unchanged, indicating that the prospect of Brexit is no worse than forecasters last thought it was.

Instead, it was an update for the country on where the economy stands now, compared to his Autumn Budget.

"Certainly he did have an opportunity to unveil stronger growth for this year alongside a forecast of United Kingdom inflation falling back to target by the end of the year".

But the OBR also warned that bringing the deficit down to zero will require ongoing cuts or tax rises over the next few years.

He told the BBC: "The growth forecasts are about 1.5% growth each year for the next few years which is better than forecasting a recession, but it's an terrible lot worse than you might reasonably expect".


The Chancellor told Cabinet that over the last two quarters, the United Kingdom has seen slightly stronger productivity growth, which he said was the key to higher wages.

The Government is expected to borrow £45.2billion this year - almost £5billion less than previously forecast, allowing ministers to spend more without breaking the bank.

Some of the money raised from any tax changes would be used to encourage the creation of new, greener products and services.

Cash payments made up 40% of payments in 2016, and are predicted to fall to 21% by 2026, while the growth of digital payments has been fast-paced, according to the consultation paper.

The consultation on tackling plastic pollution will run until 18 May 2018.

It comes as the number of ATMs in the United Kingdom is under threat from proposed increases to interchange fees.

He also said the government was considering new taxes on single-use plastic and on the profits of tech giants like Facebook and Google.

Additionally, £20m from existing budgets would be given to businesses and universities to research ways to reduce the impact of plastics on the environment.

After eight years of austerity, millions of voters are now exhausted of relentless cuts - helping Jeremy Corbyn spring to the top of the polls.

Mr Hammond told Theresa May and her senior ministers that "thanks to the hard work of the British public, there is light at the end of the tunnel". The Housing Growth Partnership, which provides support to smaller housebuilders, will also be doubled to £220 million.

Chancellor Phillip Hammond claims over 60,000 first time buyers have already benefitted from the stamp duty relief he announced at his November Budget.

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