NEWS | Manchester Evening News to ask the public what they think of the budget

March 21, 2012

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News Manc can exclusively reveal that the Manchester Evening News plans to ask a number of local residents their opinion of today’s budget.

It’s also believed that the Manchester newspaper will work out exactly how better or worse off the budget makes these people and will inform readers of the outcome.

Staff at the paper feel that this will enable readers to affiliate with one of the types of people on show and therefore empathise accordingly.

Manchester Evening News editor Paul Simpkin spoke to News Manc.

“It all came about after a staff meeting. I think it was Gary, who normally works on Sport, who suggested it.”

“He said: “Hey, I know, why don’t we gather up an old biddy who can’t afford her heating, a single mother who is struggling, a middle-class family who earn shit loads but still whine about tax credits and a single lad who’s trying to buy a house. We could interview them all and work out how the budget has affected them.”

“It was a brilliant idea”, added Simpkin. “We knew at this point we had a really unique and unusual journalistic angle with which to cover the budget.

News Manc has managed to recreate what the article might look like:

Elsie Brinter, 82, Stockport


£4.28 a week worse off
Elsie Brinter is 82 and lives in a 6 bedroom house in Stockport that she bought for 3 shillings and a bottle top in 1957. She buys nice that nice ham from Waitrose and is concerned that she may have to start getting that slightly inferior ham from Sainsbury’s. Wishes the government would do something about interest rates as her £200,000 in savings is only earning 0.25% interest. Not keen on ‘darkies’ and is sad that the budget didn’t address this.

Ryan Forsting, 25, Salford


£3.42 a week better off
Ryan is a dick who lives at home with his parents. He likes David Guetta and uses the word ‘bants’ to mean banter when he’s out with his mates. He likes to tell people that he’s saving a deposit for a house but in reality he spends most of his £16,000 salary on £45 t-shirts from Urban Outfitters and accessories for his iPad. Is planning to use the extra £3.42 a week to start his own property development business. Thinks George Osborne is a “proper gaylord” and that Nick Clegg is a bit of a “lad”.

The Thompson Family, Didsbury


£6.92 a week worse off
The Thompsons live in Didsbury and only appear in photographs with watermarks on them. Gary Thompson, 43, is a Software Development Integration Manager and earns £67,000 a year. His wife, Judith, does a lot of yoga and tells their children about additives.

The Thompson’s will be £360 a year worse off after cuts in tax credits. They have previously used this money to send their two children, Megan and Asa, to drama classes which they say will now have to stop. Judith has written an angry letter to the local paper and discusses it regularly on Mumsnet.

Why not try our interactive calculator to see whether you will be better or worse off after this year’s budget?


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