'Worse than Victorian times' - councillors comment on rising fuel costs

Several of the borough's councillors have spoken out against the expected rise of fuel prices.

Several of the borough's councillors have spoken out against the expected rise of fuel prices. - Credit: Archant

"Government intervention is essential."

That is the view of councillors for some of Great Yarmouth's most deprived areas who have shared their concerns on further fuel price hikes.

The Resolution Foundation, a national think tank has said the number of families spending at least 10pc of their budgets on energy bills is set to triple after the new energy price cap comes into effect in April.

Tony Wright speaking at the unveiling of a blue plaque to mark the 30th anniversary of Crimestoppers

Tony Wright said rises in fuel bills as well as inflation will be a burden for many people in the town. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2013

In Great Yarmouth, former MP and current councillor for Nelson Ward Tony Wright said: "Changes in fuel supply and costs have already hit many of our residents and, with the impending increases from April, will create even more poverty, forcing many to heat or eat.

"This along with other consumer products increasing with inflation of over 5pc will undoubtedly increase the problems they already face."

Carrie Talbot, councillor for Central and Northgate Ward, said: "This rise in fuel prices is going to leave so many people either hungry or cold potentially both.

"In modern society we should not have individuals choosing to either go hungry or be cold.

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"It has been reported in previous years that around the country the elderly have died due to complications from being cold as they could not afford to heat their homes.

"I find it absolutely abhorrent that Westminster are not up in arms about this. 

"Their job is to serve the people and at the moment they are failing dismally.

"I would reiterate as I did before, please if you have access to the internet look up the the Warm Home Discount that will either give you money off your bill or credit on your meter depending on your benefits and income."

Michael JealPicture: James Bass

Michael Jeal said the rises in fuel prices will add to the ongoing problems faced by residents of Nelson Ward. - Credit: Eastern Daily Press © 2012

Michael Jeal, Nelson Ward councillor, said: "People in Nelson Ward are already in the seven most deprived areas in the country and don't need this extra burden."

Kerry Robinson-Payne, councillor for the Nelson Ward, said residents had really appreciated the effo

Kerry Robinson-Payne, councillor for the Nelson Ward, said residents had really appreciated the efforts of the litter hit squad. Picture: James Bass - Credit: James Bass

Kerry Robinson-Payne, also a councillor for Nelson Ward, said: "Whilst so many of our residents have already experienced a drop in their income and are struggling to make ends meet, we expect things to get a whole lot worse for these residents.

"It's worse than Victorian times.

"Government intervention is essential."

On Monday, it was announced that the government were looking into how to tackle the effect rising fuel prices will have on many people and families.

In November, more than 100 people attended an open day at Age Connected centre on Regent Street to get advice about how to say warm and healthy during winter.