Nearly £40m for Greater Manchester regeneration projects announced in Budget

Chancellor of the Exchequer Jeremy Hunt has today announced the Budget for 2023, with childcare services and energy bills addressed.

Since the last spring statement it has been a year of economic turbulence, a rapid rise in the rate of inflation and three newly appointed Chancellors of the Exchequer. Today’s statement is seen as a crucial step in resolving inflation and restoring economic growth.

As part of the Budget, 16 regeneration projects were announced across England. £6.6m has been appointed for Wigan, £5.4m for Salford and £19.9m for Tameside.

Alongside these projects, £58m has been designated to three levelling up projects in the North West, one of which is a new community hub in Stockport.

Rochdale and Oldham are another two areas which will receive part of the £400 million set aside by the government as part of levelling up.

As part of the Budget, the Chancellor announced that the £2,500 cap on energy bills will be extended by three months to June.

This will come as welcome news for Greater Manchester residents as last year, it was reported that in areas of Greater Manchester, more than 80% of houses had poor efficiency energy ratings. 

Jeremy Hunt made some significant changes also announced that 30 hours of free childcare for working parents is now extended to children under three years old.

The Chancellor said: “We will introduce 30 hours of free childcare not just for three- and four-year-olds, but for every single child over the age of nine months.”

On average, it costs parents £137.69 for 25 hours of nursery childcare and £263.81 for 50 hours a week. It also costs £62 to use after-school clubs for five days a week.

For punters concerned about the rising costs of pints, Jeremy Hunt also announced a freeze on pint duty. From August 1, duty on draught pints will be up to 11p cheaper than that in supermarkets.

Mr Hunt said: “British ale is warm, but the duty on a pint is frozen.” As over November last year, a Manchester pint cost £4.44 on average. 

Whilst prices vary across Greater Manchester, pubs and other venues have felt the pinch as beer prices have increased over the last year. Image Credit.

According to the Office for Budget Responsibility, the UK economy is expected to shrink by 0.2%. However, it is predicted that the economy will see a growth of 1.4% by next year.

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