British Gas is launching a new £2 million fund to help its most financially vulnerable customers who are struggling to pay their bills this winter, building on the support it already offers them.
The Winter Fuel Fund has been set up in response to the increasing cost of living and rising inflation, including Ofgem’s most recent price cap increase of £139. Through the fund thousands of British Gas customers with debt of £250 or more will be provided with grants, to help pay towards their energy bills over the coming months.
The new fund will be on top of the support British Gas already provides for customers. It currently helps around 300,000 customers each year to manage their debt, including giving them more time to pay their bills. In addition, the British Gas Energy Trust delivers advice and support services for customers in England, Scotland, and Wales, and last year provided £1.8 million of debt relief, emergency fuel vouchers, and grants to replace boilers, with a further £3.6 million of funding provided to other organisations who support all energy customers in Scotland, England and Wales both with advice and financial support.
Customers can find out more on how we can help on the British Gas website.
"The rising costs of living, coupled with the increasing cost of energy, are putting more people under financial pressure. I hear from our customers every day that they are struggling, and they need our support now more than ever. This fund adds to the financial support and advice we already offer our customers either directly or indirectly through organisations such as the British Gas Energy Trust. We’re doing everything we can to help, and this additional grant will make a big difference to our most financially vulnerable customers this winter."
Chris O'Shea, Chief Executive, Centrica
British Gas customers will be contacted by email or letter to let them know they may be eligible, and they will be able to apply via the British Gas Energy Trust website from today until the end of March.
The company has a long history of supporting its customers in a number of ways financially. As well as directing them to right services and advice that can help them get back on track, it also provides advice on how to make their homes more energy efficient to manage their bills.
The British Gas Energy Trust will be administering the fund using the criteria they use to identify households across the UK most in need of additional support. For customers who are not eligible, the Trust will continue to offer advice on how they can access alternative sources of financial support.
Over the winter and beyond British Gas will continue this support by:
- Continuing to help customers manage their debt and giving them more time to pay, through payment plans and encouraging early meter readings. Last year 300,000 customers were supported in this way. Customers can find out more on the British Gas website about receiving this help.
- British Gas will be contributing £120 million to assist customers on low income through the Warm Home Discount. Customers can find out if they are eligible via the British Gas website.
- British Gas will also provide energy efficiency improvements to thousands UK households. Customers can find out more on the British Gas website about receiving this help.
- British Gas also supports nearly 3 million customers on British Gas’ Priority Services Register, which receives around 5,000 calls to the dedicated phone line each week. Customers can call British Gas on 0800 0728 625 to register. Or, if you are a Pay As You Go customer, call on 0800 294 8604.
- Additionally, the British Gas Energy Trust funds 49 frontline advice services across England, Scotland, and Wales. All energy customers, not just those with British Gas, have access this help. They can contact their energy company for more information on where to get help or find out more from the British Gas Energy Trust.
About British Gas
British Gas is Britain’s leading supplier of energy and services and the country’s biggest retailer of zero carbon electricity. We are part of Centrica, a company founded on a 200-year heritage of serving people. We provide energy and services to over 7 million UK homes and businesses, supported by around 7,500 highly trained engineers and technicians. We also offer a range of innovative products and services, including Hive and our on-demand digital trades service, Local Heroes. Our purpose of helping Our purpose of helping customers live sustainably, simply and affordably drives our strategy and our People and Planet Plan.
About British Gas Energy Trust
The British Gas Energy Trust (BGET), which incorporates the Scottish Gas Energy Trust, is an independent Charitable Trust established funded solely by British Gas. Since the launch of the Trust in 2004, over £130 million has been invested in helping over 500,000 people manage their energy costs. The Trust provides grants go up to £2,000 where exceptional vulnerability is evidenced and to be eligible, individuals must not have a household income of over £16,190 (excluding households with Carers, Disability, 3+ children) and they must have received help from a money advice agency.
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