1. This tool is a rough and ready calculator. It doesn't take into account the subtleties of budget cuts such as knock-on effects on employment, etc.
2. The figures come from the last government's March 2010 budget
3. How it works: we've taken each spending area budget, worked out the value of a single percentage point, ie, 1/100th of that budget, then, using official figures, given an example that is representative of spending in that area. For example, the defence budget is £40bn. One percentage point equivalent is £400m, which is equal to the annual cost of employing 8,723 average lowest ranked service men and women across the army, RAF, Navy and Marines.
* Other includes spending on general government expenditure, recreation, culture, religion, agriculture, and industry.