Tracey hosts British Gas in Parliament

Although it is still quite mild for this time of year, many people are beginning to think about their energy costs over the winter. Last week Tracey hosted a reception here in Parliament with British Gas and its parent company Centrica to discuss the help and support available to households. The supplier, which has committed £100 million to help consumers since the start of the energy crisis, continues to provide support through its British Gas Energy Support Fund with grants of up to £1,500 to thousands of its customers with debt.

While the energy price cap has recently been lowered, there are still many households struggling with the cost of living. Tracey wants to make sure that people know the wide-ranging support available to help them and she encourages anyone who is struggling to speak to their energy supplier and organisations such as the British Gas Energy Trust.

Tracey said:

“It was great to meet British Gas engineers Alex Dewart and Isaura Johnston, who both regularly visit their customers’ homes and have seen the tough time a lot of people are going through first hand. They were so helpful in not only outlining the available help one could get by contacting their energy supplier, but also raising awareness of several simple changes you can make around the house which can make a big difference in reducing your energy bill.”

Here were some of their top tips:

- Bleed your radiators: Air can enter the system and form bubbles at the top of your radiators, which stops them from working efficiently. If you notice cold spots at the top of your radiators, switch them off and after they cool, turn a radiator key in the valve at the top to let the air out.

- TLC for your boiler: In our experience, people often don’t give much thought to their boiler until something goes wrong with it – but regular services can prevent problems from arising at all. British Gas’s Homecare products mean customers can protect their boiler and have an annual service. It’s essential for keeping the household going, so it’s well worth looking after.

- Get the help you’re entitled to: It’s always worth finding out if you’re eligible for extra assistance with your energy bills, especially before the cold weather sets in. Face-to-face advice, financial support and grants up to £1,500 are available from the British Gas Energy Trust (even if you’re not a British Gas customer). Most suppliers also offer assistance funds to provide grants towards energy costs.

Other energy suppliers are doing their bit too - Octopus Energy, who, along with British Gas, have come to the Over 55s Fair in the past, have a section on their website to help with crisis -

And a good personal and professional go to page on most things money, Martin Lewis, also has a section on energy -

“I appreciate how difficult sudden energy price changes have been over the past year and I would like to take this opportunity to encourage all my constituents to make sure they are receiving all the help they are entitled to.”