I had two main asks of Government to support Mansfield and I'm pleased that the Chancellor has listened to us on both counts.
The first was about providing additional support for Miners' Welfares. After holding a Westminster Hall debate on sports facilities in coalfield communities and following on from representations I've been making to the Treasury, the Chancellor has put up £8 million of funding for the "repair and alteration of village halls and miners welfare facilities".
I'm really pleased that after asking the Government to support Miners' Welfares and boost funding for their upkeep and their sports facilities, the Chancellor is providing support for Mansfield, and similar communities, to help them make the most of their local assets.
The second ask has been about our High Streets, both helping small shops to flourish and helping to regenerate the town centre. Small retail businesses will see their business rates cut, which will help our local shops, and now there's even more incentive for MDC to properly plan for the future as there's cash available from Government to implement their plans if they can sort it out. We have some great local shops and it is good that the Government is working to support them, and to regenerate Mansfield's High Street.
I also welcome plans for mental health services, social care funding and positive support for veterans' mental health as part of First World War commemorations, and for educating our children about the Holocaust.
This was a positive budget and shows once again that the Government is listening to working people. Now that the purse strings are loosened a little and all that hard work has paid off, we can focus on helping people to feel better off.
The big red Budget book is available to read here, but here is a quick summary of some of the key announcements:
The Chancellor will be raising the personal allowance tax threshold a year early. This means that from April next year, the personal allowance will be £12,500 and the Higher Rate Threshold will be £50,000, letting people keep more of the money that they earn.
Help for small shops by cutting business rates by a third for all retailers in England with a rateable value of £51,000 or less. This will mean an annual saving of up to £8,000 for up to 90% of all independent shops, pubs, restaurants and cafes. A big boost for struggling high streets throughout the UK!
This comes alongside £675m of co-funding to create a "Future High Streets Fund" to support councils to draw up plans for the transformation of their High Streets, allowing councils to invest in the improvements that they need and to facilitate the redevelopment of under-used retail and commercial areas into residential properties. The funding will be available to Councils who have put together a proper plan to address their high street issues and to regenerate the area for the future.
An extra £20.5bn for the NHS over the next five years to include mental health crisis services in A&E, mental health ambulances and a 24h crisis helpline
An additional £1bn for the Universal Credit transition and £1.7m to increase the incomes of low earners on UC
A funding boost of £420m to repair potholes
A further £160m for counter-terrorism police and new local Police funding plans to be announced in December
An additional £1bn in defence spending to boost cyber capabilities
A further £500m for the Housing Infrastructure Fund to support new infrastructure around major housing developments
Duties on Fuel, beer, cider and spirits tax frozen for another year to help our pubs
Abolishing the use of Private Finance Initiative for future projects and setting up a new body to improve the management of existing PFIs like the deal signed by Labour at Kingsmill hospital, which is one of the most expensive in the UK
Making it cheaper for small businesses to take on apprentices by halving the cost of the Apprenticeship levy, helping to create more training places
A tax on imported plastic packaging which contains less than 30% recycled plastic
£60m for planting trees in England