Age of austerity Austerity Britain is arriving at a platform near you. In June the new Chancellor, George Osborne, steamed in with the first budget of the Conservative/Lib-Dem coalition. It was styled an ‘emergency budget’, aimed at reducing the enormous national debt, and everyone will have to get on board. John Benton The measures introduced included a rise in VAT to 20% from next January, Capital Gains Tax increasing from 18% to 28%, and the freezing of child benefits. In my street already some of the young guys are downsizing from flash cars to motorbikes. subscribe now Join today to gain access to the rest of this article and many others. more info login If you are already a subscriber, log in to continue. log in access code If you have an access code, enter it here: Go free trial Get free access for 14 days: Sign up Click here to find out how we take care of your personal data.