Live updates

George Osborne announces date for summer budget

Credit: PA

George Osborne will set out the government's plans to balance the books and overhaul welfare when he delivers the first all-Tory budget on 8th July.

The financial package would focus on "working people" and turning the Conservatives' election promises "into a reality", Chancellor Osborne said.

Announcing the date in an article for The Sun rather than the more conventional method of a statement to Parliament - which is not yet sitting - Mr Osborne said: "On 8th July I am going to take the unusual step of having a second Budget of the year - because I don't want to wait to turn the promises we made in the election into a reality...

"And I can tell you it will be a Budget for working people."

Treasury aides indicated the Summer Budget would set out the Government's plan to deliver savings promised during the election campaign, and pay down Britain's debts in a "fair and balanced way".

Mr Osborne is expected to give more details of how ministers intend to shave £12 billion a year from the welfare bill while protecting the most vulnerable.

Osborne outlines 'radical new model of city government'

Chancellor George Osborne has outlined "a radical new model of city government" for major English cities to take control of their own affairs if they agree to be governed by a directly elected mayor.

Speaking in Manchester, he said: "We will hand power from the centre to cities to give you greater control over your local transport, your housing, your schools, your healthcare and we'll give you the levers you need to grow your local economy and make sure local people keep the rewards.

"With these new powers for cities must come new city-wide elected mayors who work with local councils.....I will not impose a mayor on anyone but nor will I settle for less. My door is open to any other major city who wants to take this bold step into the future".

"This is a revolution in the way we govern England", Mr Osborne added.


Osborne: Mayors needed for regional devolution

It is time for major cities in England to take control of their own affairs, the Chancellor will declare later today, but they will need to accept Mayors to do so.

George Osborne will explain that cities will be given power over local transport, housing, planning, policing and public health.

Manchester. Credit: Dave Thompson/PA

Mr Osborne has previously said devolution must go hand-in-hand with the establishment of an elected mayor.

Today he is expected to reiterate that, saying people must have a "single pointy of accountability."

Manchester is the first city set to benefit from extra powers, with plans for an elected "metro mayor" for the whole of the Greater Manchester region.

Describing the new law as a "bold step", Mr Osborne will say he is open to approaches from other cities wishing to follow the same route.

George Osborne tipped for Deputy Prime Minister

There are suggestions that George Osborne could be in line for the Deputy Prime Minister job as he makes his way to Downing Street this morning.

George Osborne arrives at Downing Street this morning Credit: Dominic Lipinski/PA Wire

David Cameron will be able to choose all his own Cabinet Ministers if he is able to form a majority government as predicted.

During the last Government ministers jobs were shared with coalition partners the Liberal Democrats, with leader Nick Clegg as Deputy Prime Minister.

Osborne: PM gave performance of a lifetime

George Osborne has tweeted that David Cameron has given the "performance of a lifetime" during his Question Time appearance.


Osborne jokes as he almost 'takes out the press' with truck

George Osborne managed to find some time to have some fun on the campaign trail today when he was given the chance to load a low loader.

The Chancellor grinned as he lifted the pallet of bricks on to the truck, and seemed to purposefully misdirect the haul at the waiting press line, with one onlooker remarking: "you're going take the press corps out like that."

Mr Osborne joked as he moved the bricks on to the truck: "Just trying to keep you on your toes."

Osborne defends 'positive' Tory election campaign

George Osborne has defended the Tory election campaign amid claims the party has adopted a negative tone in its electioneering.

The Chancellor told BBC Radio 4's Today programme: "I don't accept it hasn't gone well. I think we have fought a very positive campaign.

George Osborne has defended the Tory election campaign. Credit: PA Wire

"I think it's a very close election - that's been clear it was going to be close for some time now - and I think the choice facing the country is becoming clearer and clearer and starker and starker."

Asked to give marks out of 10 for the Conservative campaign, Osborne said, "We will come back on May 8 and see how it went."

Load more updates