Energy plan could help the elderly

Thousands of pensioners aged over 75 in the Dearne Valley could save as much as £200 off their energy bills under new proposals announced by Labour.

The plans would mean that energy companies have to put all over 75s on the cheapest tariff for their electricity and gas.

Nearly 20,000 older people in Rotherham and nearly 15,000 in Barnsley would benefit.

John Healey, MP for Wentworth and Dearne, said: “With more than 400 tariffs on offer, it’s no surprise that 80 per cent of people in our area are paying over the odds for their electricity and gas bills.

“This rip-off must end. To start with the big energy companies must make sure pensioners over 75 are on the cheapest energy deal.”

Nationally, the plan will benefit 4 million elderly people, who are the least likely to shop around for cheaper energy bills and at most risk from fuel poverty.

Mr Healey has called in Parliament for energy bills to be simplified and pressed Ofgem and the Energy Secretary to take action. There are more than 400 different tariffs available at present.