So is it possible to survive on the £53 a week, which Iain Duncan Smith has suggested is possible, in Tonbridge? Well let's think what you could do. Here's a few tips:
Firstly: Do not be tempted to go to Tunbridge Wells or Bluewater. Too many shops and tempting, expensive junk food places.
Do go and buy a book from Mr. Books or a charity shop. This will provide your entertainment, if you choose wisely, for the whole week. You can then sell it back and get 50p towards next week's book.
Do shop at Lidl. They're not only cheap but often just as good as the other supermarkets in terms of quality. You just get less choice of brands.
Do feel like you can treat yourself to Fish and Chips at the Avebury Avenue Fish Bar. I can tell you that you won't get much better Haddock, Chips and mushy peas anywhere. And I've had a lot of fish and chips in my time! It's a very nutritious and filling meal and about the same price as a Mc D's.
Do shop at the fruit and veg stall at the arcade. Their produce is good quality and you're helping a small business and therefore the local economy. Same goes for the butchers.
Avoid Waitrose and Sainsbury's unless you are very disciplined. It's not so much that they are more expensive than Lidl and Co Op it's just that they're very crafty, devious even, when it comes to shop layout. It's easy to spend £53 on a visit even when you may have only gone in for a pint of milk! Beware!
Do make use of the park and Barden Lake/country park. Not wishing to be patronising but walking, running and cycling, even the out door gym on the park, are all free and very healthy at the same time.
Steer clear of gambling activities like the slot machine arcade and the bookies (excepting a small flutter on the Grand National this weekend obviously!)
Join a club at the Angel Centre. There's lots of them, from Tai Chi to Flower arranging and they're all pretty cheap to join.
Don't go swimming in the river. Although free and once a great source of enjoyment in Tonbridge, it's now seen as a dangerous activity and could lead to an earlier than expected death!
Take up photography and enter free competitions. There's lots of subject matter around Tonbridge from sports to wildlife, to river life and retail life. Great fun and most people have a decent camera these days with them all the time on their mobiles.
Make use of the library. Free books, free magazines and newspapers, free computer use. Nice and warm in there usually as well.
So there's just a few suggestions on how to survive in Tonbridge by not eating into your £53 a week budget too heavily. I'm sure they'll be more...