Britain's beleaguered economy is finally "on the mend", Chancellor George Osborne said today, as official figures showed a second successive quarter of growth.
All four main sectors showed improvement, according to the Office for National Statistics (ONS).
The estimate of a 0.6% rise in gross domestic product (GDP) was the first time since 2011 that the UK has seen back-to-back quarterly growth, and doubled the 0.3% figure for the last period.
It was in line with expectations, but the fact that the struggling construction and manufacturing sectors managed to swing into expansion were seen as particularly encouraging, as it suggested a broad-based improvement.
The Chancellor hailed the figures as a vindication of the coalition's austerity policies, tweeting:
GDP stats better than forecast.Britain's holding its nerve, we're sticking to our plan, the economy's on the mend.But still a long way to go
Prime Minister David Cameron said the figures were "encouraging" and showed Britain was "on the right track - building an economy for hard-working people".
Chief Secretary to the Treasury Danny Alexander highlighted after the announcement that there was "a lot more to do":
Good, balanced growth figures show we are on the right track - but not time to get carried away, there's a lot more to do
Shadow chancellor Ed Balls gave a cautious welcome to the growth figures, saying: "After three damaging years of flatlining, this growth is both welcome and long overdue.
"But there is still no recovery in family living standards".