As slick Chancellor Rishi Sunak's Budget contains nothing for public sector Covid heroes, nor for our failing social care system of childcare and working families, we talk to six real people to find out how it affects them.
From the frontline nurse who tells us "I feel like we're literally at the bottom of the list" to the shop owner who found Sunak's plan "better than expected", here are the reactions of six Brits.
The frontline nurse: 'We are human too'
Mel Kerr, 26, said nurses feel “literally bottom of the list” when it comes to recognition and pay.
“We have had a real-time pay cut for the past decade,” she told the Mirror. “We are crying out for recognition for what we have done.”
The staff nurse from Lincoln, who is a member of the Royal College of Nursing, said the NHS is already struggling from a chronic nursing shortage and she fears more will leave the profession without better pay and conditions.
She said the last year had been “horrendous” for nurses, adding: “I know colleagues in other areas that have had so many deaths per shift and having to process that and having to put these people in body bags, and not allowing visitors and having to deal with grieving relatives.
“We need to remember that we are human as well – there's only so much emotionally, physically and mentally that we can handle.”
Single mum: 'Cliff edge'
Single mum Caroline Rice, 46, said extending the £20 uplift in Universal Credit for just six months was leaving low income families with “another cliff edge to dread”.
Calling for the boost to be made permanent, she said: “Don't take that lifeline away when we are facing another dark winter.
"Come up with a way to better help low income families.”
The childminder from Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, had to claim Universal Credit after she was made redundant this summer after the pandemic hit.
Caroline, who is part of the Covid Realities project exploring the impact of the pandemic on parents and carers on low incomes, said she and her daughter, aged ten, are living “day to day, week to week”.
She added: “I am just getting by. I have no savings.
"If they take that £90 away I don't know what I am going to be able to do to make my minimum payments.
“I don't drink, I don't smoke – there's no luxuries in this house.”
NHS nurse Holly Turner, 39, said she was “devastated” that the budget failed to deliver an NHS pay rise.
The Child and Adolescent Mental Health nurse from Essex said the pandemic had been “horrendous” for her family after both she and her husband, also a nurse, fell ill with the virus.
The GMB Union member said referrals to CAMHS have already trebled during the pandemic and she called for a pay rise and proper investment to help them retain and recruit staff.
She said: “We spent the past year caring for the most vulnerable in our communities – putting them above our own health at times.
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"And we have done it, we have turned up and kept the health service running and there is just no mention of any appreciation.
"We don't want a reward – we have been arguing for a pay rise for the past decade – but some recognition for the work we have done and the risk we have been placed in.
Addressing the government, she added: “If you want to save the future of our NHS you need to begin investing in the workforce if we are going to be able to keep our patients and our communities safe.”
Advanced paramedic Gareth Ward, 32, said the budget will leave NHS staff demoralised.
He called for a payrise and proper NHS funding to help them manage the backlog from Covid, which has left some areas "three years behind".
After hearing the plan does not include a payrise for weary NHS workers, the Unison member told the Mirror: "I am not surprised but I am very frustrated, especially in the middle of a global pandemic. I think staff in the NHS have gone above and beyond.
"Even outside of Covid wards lots of us have taken on more responsibility and taken on extra overtime to support the vaccination program. I think lots of staff will be very demoralised."
Gareth, from Devizes, Wiltshire, added: "I just think it would help with morale - it's just recognition so we feel valued."
He also said that anything less than meeting the demands for £10bn of extra funding to help them tackle a growing backlog is "unacceptable".
Pub landlady Dianne Irving was left a “little bit disappointed” by the help served-up by the Chancellor.
She runs three pubs in and around Carlisle, with trade hammered by the lockdowns.
Dianne says she would have ditched the tenancy on the Howard Arms, in Carlisle centre, if the cost of doing so had not been so high.
On the budget, she said: “I was hoping for more.
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“The grants that were announced won’t cover my ongoing costs.
“The VAT cut will be good but it only applies to food and not alcohol.”
She added: “There will still be a lot of pubs that will go because of the rent dents they’ve built up, and after the moratorium on that ends.”
Shop owner: 'Better for us'
Dorothy Robinson welcomed the raft of small business friendly measures in the budget.
“It was better than I expected,” said Dorothy, who owns womenswear outlet Dotique, in Chesterfield, Derbyshire.
The shop has been hit hard by the lockdown and demand for formalwear, including mother-of-the-bride outfits, special occasions and outfits for cruises.
Dorothy said: “We expected the corporation tax to rise but it’s not until 2023 and, as a small business, the 25% rate won’t impact us.”
She added: “We would have liked the 100% business rate relief to have carried on for longer, but reducing it by two thirds after that will still help.
“The key is making sure the government sticks to the roadmap because so much of our trade is reliant on weddings, proms and the like.”