Armed forces get fuel poverty in their sights

A new service aims to protect current and previous members of the armed forces from fuel poverty. Forces for Warmth, an initiative launched by the National Energy Action (NEA) and […]

By Jonny Bairstow

A new service aims to protect current and previous members of the armed forces from fuel poverty.

Forces for Warmth, an initiative launched by the National Energy Action (NEA) and The Royal British Legion (TRBL), is already helping vulnerable ex-service people across the East Midlands tackle their energy bills.

A survey conducted by the charities in 2014 found a significant number of the ex-service community over the age of 65 had experienced difficulties paying their energy bills, often due to receiving an income below the national average.

It also found a quarter of those of working age were in debt and struggling to pay fuel bills.

The charities are now offering in-depth tailored advice and home visits to help those affected stay warm.

They will also host community events to help raise awareness for the problem. The pilot project is likely to be expanded from the East Midlands to other areas across the UK in the future.

The scheme helped Peter Williamson, an 87 year old ex-serviceman, get onto a cheaper energy tariff and save money. Mr Williamson said: “I was really pleased with what the advisor did; she helped me save over £70 which makes a big difference to us. She is going to look into helping me save more in the future.

“Forces for Warmth really helped me and anyone that qualifies should definitely take advantage of it.”

The Conservative Party has pledged to cap “rip-off” energy prices if it wins the general election.