Weather forecasters have warned that parts of Britain could be hit with cold wintry weather this weekend, with temperatures colder than Moscow.
The freezing conditions will come as a shock to many after the prolonged mild spell. The Weather Channel UK has told us to expect frosty nights, bitterly cold Arctic air - even ice and snow for some. Maximum temperatures are expected to be just 3 to 6C across the UK and the wind-chill will make it feel sub-zero. Heavy snowfalls are predicted for parts of the Highlands, Southern Uplands, Pennines and Cambrian Mountains.
No Cold Homes campaign
The news comes as Turn2us launches its No Cold Homes campaign to help more people who are struggling with their energy bills. The charity is encouraging anyone in financial hardship to use its free online service to see if they are eligible for welfare benefits, charitable grants and other support – additional income which could help them manage their energy costs over the colder months.
Recent research carried out by the charity found that half (50%) of low income working households are worried about the cost of energy this winter. The research also showed that over half (55%) of low income working households are anticipating stress and illness to be exacerbated by increased costs. Unfortunately, the cost of energy bills means that over two thirds (71%) will resort to cutting back on or not using the heating, while over two fifths (44%) will reduce their spending on food to be able to keep warm.
Turn2us commented: “Last year there were over 18,000 excess winter deaths as a result of the cold weather and we wanted to explore the extent to which concerns of the cost of fuel bills were contributing to that.”
The charity spoke to over 2,000 people across the UK who were in work and earning under £30,000 a year. The results revealed that half of those questioned were struggling to afford their energy costs with 33% having skipped meals as a result.
“These figures reveal the shocking extent to which the cost of fuel is impacting on the lives of some of the most vulnerable in society, with 67% of those struggling living with disabilities and 21% having experienced stress or mental health problems as a result.”
Turn2us for support
If you are struggling to make ends meet and worried about cost of your energy bills this winter, visit the No Cold Homes campaign section of our website to find out more about the support that may be available to you. You can use our Benefits Calculator to check your entitlement to welfare benefits and our Grants Search to see if you are eligible for help from a charitable fund, based on your personal background, circumstances and needs.
Our website also has a section on Energy Schemes, which contains information on the grants that may be available to help you with the cost of energy.