New free service to tackle fuel poverty launched in Adur and Worthing

Cllr Dave Simmons Adur DC Exec Member for Health and Wellbeing at the launch of LEAP

Thousands of residents across Adur and Worthing could save money and keep warm in their homes after the launch of a new free service.

With more than 30,000 households across West Sussex (8.4 per cent) in fuel poverty, Adur & Worthing Councils has joined with Local Energy Advice Partnership (LEAP) to offer residents advice to stay warm this winter.

The scheme, which forms part of the Councils’ new Sustainability Framework, sees eligible households receive a free home visit from a qualified energy advisor. They will then be offered top tips on lowering bills, improving energy efficiency, accessing grants and benefits and managing debt.

As well as potentially saving household hundreds of pounds a year, the programme could also improve the health and wellbeing of some of the most vulnerable residents across Adur and Worthing.

Councillor David Simmons, Adur District Council’s Executive Member for Health & Wellbeing, said: “Many people face difficult choices, when considering whether keep their home warm or spend limited income on other essentials. We recognise that failing to keep the home warm can cause the health of many local people to suffer.

“This programme is designed to provide advice from an expert who will visit their home at no cost to those who qualify, and where possible also fit money saving devices, again at no cost, to help them manage their income more effectively.  Prevention is the best way forward, and I recommend that you take this opportunity to find out more.”

Councillor Dan Humphreys, Leader of Worthing Borough Council, said: “Fuel poverty is a modern day evil and it is vital that we do what we can to support those residents in our communities who are most in need. I urge everyone to contact LEAP and see if they able to access support from this excellent scheme.”

Both councillors were present at the launch of LEAP which took place in Worthing Town Hall this week (November 5th, 2018).

The three year programme is available to those in private rented, public rented and owner occupied homes.

It is open to a wide number of residents, including people on a low income; those with a range of health conditions and individuals classed as vulnerable, such as victims of domestic abuse, recently bereaved and recently classed as homeless.

Those running the scheme said anyone who finds it difficult to heat their home to at least 19C are encouraged to take advantage of the scheme.

LEAP can help residents:

  • Check if you are on the cheapest energy tariff – potentially saving £280 per year;
  • Install FREE, simple energy saving measures to lower household bills;
  • With day-to-day energy saving hints and tips to ensure your heating system is set up to keep you warm and save money;
  • Arrange for FREE telephone advice to help with benefits, debt and other money problems
  • Access other improvements such as loft insulation or a new boiler.

To find out more about LEAP and to arrange a free home visit from an advisor call 0800 060 7657 or apply online at www.applyforleap.org.uk.

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