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Cost of living support

by Gemma Melling

We know that the extra costs of food and essentials and the rising domestic energy prices are adding significant pressures to household budgets for many people in Knowsley.

But there is help and support available to help you with essentials such as food, help with energy costs (prepayment and credit meters).

As well as the support outlined below, Knowsley Council has allocated funding from the Government’s Household Support Fund to provide food vouchers to pupils who have been means tested and are in receipt of free school meals. This will fund the October, December, February and April school holidays, providing support to over 8,500 pupils.

Vulnerable residents who are being supporting through the council’s Adult Social Care or Children’s Services teams are also receiving bespoke support aligned to their identified needs.

You can view a map showing where you can access cost of living support from the borough’s voluntary, community, faith and social enterprise sector below:

It's important to make sure that you get all the help that you're entitled to. Citizens Advice can give you information on benefits and tax credits if you are working or unemployed, sick or disabled, a parent, a young person, an older person or a veteran. There is also information about council tax and housing costs, national insurance, payment of benefits and problems with benefits.

Benefits - Citizens Advice

NHS low-income support

Although most NHS treatments are free, there are still some costs people might need to pay for, such as prescription charges or travel costs to attend a hospital appointment.

Support is available, depending on a person’s circumstances.

Fill in this 3-minute online form to check if you’re eligible for help with NHS costs such as prescription charges, travel or dental treatment.

You do not have to be claiming benefits to apply for NHS support. If you're employed with a low income, you may also be eligible for help.

Household income will be considered, as well as council tax and housing costs.

Any help received also covers partners and children under 19.

Get help paying for:

  • NHS prescriptions
  • NHS dental treatment
  • Sight tests, new glasses or contact lenses
  • Repairing or replacing your glasses or contact lenses
  • NHS wigs and fabric supports
  • Travel for NHS treatment

Apply online for help with NHS costs

  • Applications take about 20 minutes to complete
  • Answer personalised questions based on your circumstances
  • Get instant confirmation that we've received your application
  • Get a reference number to use if you have any queries

Certain benefits or tax credits already entitle people to full help with health costs. You do not need to apply if you or your partner:

  • Get Income Support
  • Get income-based Jobseeker's Allowance
  • Get income-related Employment and Support Allowance
  • Get Pension Credit Guarantee Credit
  • Are named on, or entitled to, a valid NHS tax credit exemption certificate – if you do not have a certificate, you can show your award notice; you qualify if you get Child Tax Credits, Working Tax Credits with a disability element (or both) and have income for tax credit purposes of £15,276 or less
  • Get Universal Creditand meet the criteria

 Save money on NHS prescriptions by prepaying for them

If you pay for your prescriptions, you could save money by buying an NHS Prescription Prepayment Certificate.

You can pay a set price for prescriptions for 3 or 12 months, no matter how many prescriptions you need or what your financial circumstances are.

A single prescription costs £9.35 per item, but prepaying for an unlimited number of prescriptions is:

  • £30.25 for 3 months
  • £108.10 for 12 months (or 10 Direct Debit instalments of £10.81)

Find out how it works and buy yours here

Free flu and COVID-19 vaccination

Getting the COVID-19 booster and the flu vaccination if you are eligible, is one of the single best things that people can do help keep themselves well and support the NHS this winter

Those eligible for both vaccinations include anyone age 50+, pregnant women, and people with long-term conditions. In addition, children aged 2-3, and most school-aged children are being invited to have a nasal flu vaccination this winter.

Speak to your GP practice about getting vaccinated, call 119 or book online to find your nearest clinic: www.nhs.uk/covid-vaccination

Help with prescription charges

Care at the Chemist is an NHS scheme available across all community pharmacies in Knowsley, which enables patients to get treatment for certain minor conditions without needing to see or contact their GP for a prescription first.

Treatment under Care at the Chemist is fast, convenient, and medicines are free for anyone who does not pay for their prescriptions. Those who do pay will only pay for what the item costs or a standard prescription fee (whichever is lower).

Some of the symptoms currently covered under Care at the Chemist include treatment for sore throats, urinary infections, eye infections, minor skin conditions and thrush – plus many more.

Social prescribing link workers

Social prescribing teams – also known as 'link workers' – can help support patients to deal with non-medical issues that can impact on their physical or mental health, such as money problems, coping with a cancer diagnosis, dealing with grief, or loneliness and social isolation.

They can work with individuals to help them create a personalised wellbeing plan and link them to local resources, groups and activities that they can access in their own community, which can help support their health and wellbeing.

Ask your GP practice to refer you to a social prescribing link worker.

Free clinician-approved healthcare apps you can download today

The NHS in Knowsley have worked together with clinicians to provide residents with a platform that gives unlimited access to thousands of FREE health-approved apps that can help patients combat smoking, deal with anxiety, sleep better, get fit and live well.

Our library only contains apps that manage data privacy safely and have been developed with health and care professionals, so we can be sure that the ones we recommend to you meet safety standards.

Visit the platform and start downloading today: https://knowsley.orcha.co.uk/

Food is available to Knowsley residents through:

  • Knowsley Foodbank – either by obtaining a referral voucher from a partner (including GPs or Citizens Advice), or by calling the Knowsley Food Support line on 0151 538 8243. View a list of their distribution centres.
  • Our Place Youth Foodbank - If you're under 30 and struggling you can access Knowsley's first Young Persons foodbank on Wednesdays, 11am-2pm  at MYA Our Place, Longview Drive, Huyton, L36 6EG
  • Kirkby Foodbank (no voucher needed) - Northwood Chapel on Bigdale Drive in Quarry Green, Monday 10-11am, Thursday 4-5pm and Saturday 10-11.30am
  • Through a network of community partners working with the council through the Knowsley Better Together Hardship Fund. Contact details, opening hours and further detail of these individual offers can be found by visiting the Knowsley Better Together Hardship Fund page on the council’s website.

The food offer is available across the borough as follows:

  • Halewood – Torrington Drive Community Association, St Nicholas and St Marys Church
  • Huyton – Swanside Community Centre, Incredible Edibles, Homestart, HIYA
  • Kirkby – Southdene Community Centre, Centre 63
  • Stockbridge – Stockbridge Tenants Forum
  • Prescot – Al’s Arc, FOESP (Friends of Eaton Street Park)
  • Borough-wide sites – Knowsley Foodbank, Flourish and Succeed

Residents in need can access any of these services.  Many partners also run a social supermarket, or food club which offers food and essentials to residents at reduced prices, helping to keep the cost of the weekly shop down.  Where residents are struggling to afford to use these options, these partners can provide food for free.

Discounted food shops

A number of discounted food shops, offering a range of food and household essentials at significantly reduced prices, are available at:

Centre 63, Old Hall Lane in Kirkby – open Monday 9.30am-12pm and Wednesday 10am to 2pm.

Torrington Drive Community Association, New Hutte Community Centre, Lichfield Road in Halewood – open Monday to Friday 9.30am to 3.30pm.

Stockbridge Community Hub, Unit 2, Leach Croft in Stockbridge Village – open Tuesdays 12noon to 2pm.

The Park Pantry Community Food Hub, The Pavillion, Eaton Street in Prescot – open Wednesdays 11am to 2pm.

Community Food Hub at Court Hey Park, Huyton - Incredible Edible run a Community Food Hub from Court Hey Park in Huyton offering discounted food as well as home grown vegetables. Call in on Tuesdays from 12pm until 2pm or Fridays from 11am until 2pm.

Zero Waste @ Clockwork Studios - Every Saturday from 11am-midday, residents can take a carrier bag to Clockwork Studios and fill up on vegetables, fruits, bread and more that would otherwise go to waste.

  • Energy saving advice

With temperatures set to drop over the winter, residents who are struggling with the rising cost of living and energy bills are advised to heat the rooms they use most. For many, this will mean heating living rooms during the day and bedrooms before heading up to sleep.

Residents should try to keep rooms at around 18 degrees. Keeping windows closed and wearing a number of layers of clothing can also help.

  • Energy saving advice

Energy Projects Plus has a number of tips on how to reduce energy consumption and reduce costs.  Find out more Advice | Energy Projects Plus (epplus.org.uk)

  • Prepayment meter help

 The council’s Emergency Support Scheme has been extended to offer support to all residents who are struggling to top up their prepayment meter, regardless of benefit status.  Applications can be made online or if this isn’t possible, by calling the council’s Contact Centre on 0151 443 3200 where an advisor will complete the online application on your behalf.

As part of the council's work with the Fuel Bank Foundation, some local organisations can also issue residents with fuel vouchers for prepayment meters.  All of these Fuel Bank partners offer residents tailored support with their finances and a voucher may be issued as part of this.  Fuel vouchers will only be issued once eligibility and need have been determined, as part of a package of support. They are available from:

Halewood – Torrington Drive Community Association

Huyton – Homestart, Enterprise Credit Union, HIYA

Kirkby – Centre 63

Prescot – Prescot Advice

Borough-wide sites – Knowsley Foodbank, Care Merseyside, Citizens Advice Knowsley, Flourish and Succeed.

  • Energy advice and help

Help with managing energy costs, including energy efficiency measures and applications to trust funds, is available from Energy Projects Plus.

Residents can call for free on 0800 043 0151 Monday to Friday from 9am until 5pm or email advice@epplus.org. Leave a message and you will receive a call back.

The Knowsley Better Together Hardship Fund page also contains information about contacting your energy supplier and ways you can reduce your energy bills.

Support with energy efficiency, including help with boiler costs, is also available through the council’s own Energy Efficiency Officer - email simon.rugen@knowsley.gov.uk.  Further information is available on the council’s Energy Efficiency page.

  • Help with energy credit meter costs – for people who pay monthly/quarterly or following a bill

People with credit meters may build large debts with their energy supplier if they are unable to keep up with payments. To support these residents, the council is working with Citizens Advice Knowsley to provide support with their gas or electricity supplier. To find out more, email Citizens Advice Knowsley on advice@citizensadviceknowsley.org.uk or call 0808 278 7839.

  • Free boiler checks

Owner occupiers in Knowsley may be able to benefit from a free boiler service. If, following a service, repairs to the gas boiler are required, these repairs may be carried out up to a value of £500 by a fully qualified Gas Safe engineer. Find out more, including eligibility for this scheme.

  • Free energy-saving measures available to low-income households across the Liverpool City Region

People on low incomes across the Liverpool City Region can apply to have free energy-saving measures fitted to their homes, thanks to a £28.5m scheme a aimed at reducing energy bills and carbon emissions.

Around 2,500 households are set to benefit from measures including loft, under floor, cavity wall, internal wall and external wall insulation and low carbon heating and energy systems such as heat pumps and solar panels.

The Sustainable Warmth Fund, secured from central government, is available to households with annual incomes below £30,000 in low Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rated homes (those with E, F or G ratings, although some band D properties may be eligible).

Funding is available for owner-occupied and private rented homes. Eligible owner-occupiers do not need to contribute anything to the financial cost of the works. For private rented properties, landlords must contribute at least 1/3 of the total cost of the works to the home.  All work will be completed by March 2023.

The Sustainable Warmth Fund is being delivered in Halton, Knowsley, St Helens and Wirral by the Liverpool City Region Combined Authority (LCRCA) in partnership with those local authorities, and contractors Everwarm and Next Energy.  Liverpool City Council and Sefton Council are delivering the scheme themselves.

Residents in Halton, Knowsley, St Helens, and Wirral, can apply for the scheme through Everwarm’s website

  • Alternative Fuel Payment (AFP) Scheme

 The Alternative Fuel Payment (domestic) scheme is delivering £200 to households who use alternative fuels such as heating oil, liquefied petroleum gas (LPG), coal or biomass. The vast majority of eligible households have received the payment automatically via their electricity supplier during February. Most households do not need to take any action to receive the support.

 A small proportion of households will need to apply for the AFP, for example if they do not have a relationship with an electricity supplier. Applications for the Alternative Fund opened on 6 March through a GOV.UK portal which includes an overview of eligibility and what applicants need to do to apply for support. Households that use alternative fuels as their main heating source are eligible and applicants will have to provide evidence of this fuel use by submitting receipts showing purchase.

To check eligibility and apply, people need to search for “Apply for the alternative fuel bill support if you do not get it automatically” in the search bar on GOV.UK or in an internet search engine. For those without online access, the contact centre helpline can be reached on 0808 175 3943 where a representative will guide them through the application process. The helpline is open 8am to 6pm on Monday to Friday.

  • Cheaper broadband for low-income households

Broadband bills could be cut for millions of low-income households under Government plans to encourage social tariffs. Find out more on gov.uk

Read more about social tariffs and see if you qualify on Ofcom.

Warm Hubs at Knowsley Libraries

The borough’s libraries are operating extended hours in order to provide Warm Hubs over the winter period.

All libraries are currently open from 10am until 5pm Monday to Friday and from 10am until 1pm on Saturday. They are located at:

  • Halewood Library, Roseheath Drive, Halewood, L26 9UH

Telephone: 0151 443 2086 or email yourlibrary@knowsley.gov.uk

  • Huyton Library, Civic Way, Huyton, L36 9GD

Telephone: 0151 443 3734 or email yourlibrary@knowsley.gov.uk

  • Kirkby Library, Norwich Way, Kirkby, L32 8XY

Telephone: 0151 443 4289 or email yourlibrary@knowsley.gov.uk

  • Prescot Library, The Prescot Centre, Aspinall Street, Prescot, L34 5GA

Telephone: 0151 443 5101 or email yourlibrary@knowsley.gov.uk

  • Stockbridge Library, The Withens, Stockbridge Village, L28 1AB.

Telephone: 0151 443 2501 or email yourlibrary@knowsley.gov.uk

All of the borough’s libraries provide free access to PCs and WiFi, so as well as using the library as a Warm Hub, you can also use the PCs to find out the latest cost of living help and support that is available as well as comparing prices for your energy and phone tariffs etc.  You can either book an appointment or walk up to use a PC if any are available. For more information about this service please contact your branch on 0151 443 2086.

Knowsley Housing Solutions

Knowsley Housing solutions Service offers a free and confidential service. The specially trained team can help with all sorts of housing support related problems. Together you can look at your situation and decide on the best way to help you tackle your problems.

They can help with:-

  • Homelessness prevention
  • Benefit entitlement
  • Alternative accommodation
  • Working with your landlord and helping with issues
  • Supported housing schemes
  • Finding secure private rented accommodation
  • Giving useful advice on debt, mortgage and rent arrears, disrepair, overcrowding, under-occupancy, domestic abuse
  • Providing funding for bedding or goods from charities

If you are being evicted due to rent arrears they may be able to negotiate a repayment plan with your landlord or pay off some of your arrears.

Knowsley Housing Solutions team can be contacted on 0151 443 2333.

Further information, including completing an online form to seek support, can be found on the Council’s website.

Rented properties

If you are renting a property, your landlord must make sure that it is safe and in a good state of repair. This means carrying out repairs that they are responsible for, promptly. If a repair is urgent, for instance because something is dangerous, they must do something about it immediately.

It is against the law for your landlord to try to evict you because you have asked for repairs to be carried out; get advice if this is happening. There are also steps that a landlord needs to take if they want to end your tenancy for other reasons and they may be breaking the law if they do not follow these steps (illegal eviction) or try to force you to leave your home (harassment).

Find private rented accommodation

It’s often quicker to find a private rented property than wait for a social housing property due to demand

Check notice boards in supermarkets, small shops, newsagents, and libraries.

Advertise yourself that you need a property to rent.

If you use Facebook or Twitter, or any other social media, let your contacts know you are looking for a place

Ask friends or family to ask people they know or work with if they or anyone else they know has a property available to rent

Look on the internet e.g.

www.rightmove.co.uk

www.zoopla.co.uk

www.dssmove.co.uk

www.spareroom.co.uk

www.openrent.co.uk

Sleeping rough

If you're sleeping rough or know someone who is sleeping rough you can contact the Housing Solutions team for help – call 0151 443 2333.

Sever weather accommodation

Severe weather emergency provision must be provided when the weather is forecast to be below 0 degrees for 1 night . At this point, emergency shelter is provided by the Council, this means extra provision is made for rough sleepers regardless of their status.

Other useful links

Shelter provides a range of help and support around housing advice and support. Find out more at https://england.shelter.org.uk/get_help

https://www.citizensadvice.org.uk/debt-and-money/get-help-with-the-cost-of-living/

https://www.which.co.uk/topic/cost-of-living

https://www.gov.uk/cost-of-living

https://www.stepchange.org/how-we-help/rising-cost-of-living.aspx

https://www.ageuk.org.uk/information-advice/money-legal/cost-of-living/

Money Helper has information about debt management and free debt advisory services

https://www.moneyhelper.org.uk/en/money-troubles/dealing-with-debt?source=mas#

https://www.moneyhelper.org.uk/en/money-troubles/dealing-with-debt/use-our-debt-advice-locator?source=mas#

 

Breathing Space is a scheme that can help tenants with rent arrears. It pauses the eviction process for up to 60 days while you get debt advice.

https://england.shelter.org.uk/housing_advice/eviction/breathing_space_help_with_rent_or_mortgage_arrears

If you’re experiencing stress or anxiety due to the cost of living crisis, the Life Rooms team is available in Knowsley’s libraries providing help and support for money issues and your mental health. Mental health support is also available at www.nhs.uk/every-mind-matters or you can call the 24/7 crisis helpline on 0800 051 1508.

Life Rooms will be available in Knowsley’s libraries, during usual branch opening hours on the following days, from 10am to 4pm:

  1. Halewood Library: Mondays
  2. Huyton Library: Tuesdays
  3. Prescot Library: Wednesdays
  4. Stockbridge Village Library: Thursdays
  5. Kirkby Library: Fridays

Visit Life Rooms’ website for more information about their support.

Knowsley Disability Concern - Someone to talk to (STTT)-  ‘Someone to talk to’ service is open for over 18’s in Knowsley. The team have a member of staff on hand and ready to take your calls during the working week. You can also schedule a regular ‘staying in touch’ call where they will contact you. https://www.kdc.org.uk/someone-to-talk-to-service/

 

Whether you’re out of work looking for employment, in employment and looking to move jobs or would like to learn new skills and try something new, we can help.

The Knowsley Works team can support you will employment and training needs including helping you with job searches, job applications, developing your CV and preparing you for interview.

They can also advise on training options to help you get to where you want to be.

To find out more about employment support as well as training opportunities available, call the Knowsley Works team on 0151 443 5010 or email employment.team@knowsley.gov.uk

In addition, Knowsley Family And Community Education (FACE) team offers a range of training courses across the Borough – many are completely free of charge to attend including drop-in digital sessions and online courses with many more courses being free to eligible residents.

You can find out more by visiting www.knowsleyface.co.uk or call 0151 443 5386 or 0151 443 5385.

Residents can make their money go further by comparing bills and switching utility providers online, comparing shopping prices and using cash back websites.

Our Digital Buddies are on hand in Knowsley Libraries to support residents to get online and can help you to browse the web, set up an email account, show you how to video call, carry out online shopping, how to use social media, how to access Council services and much more!

Visit one of Knowsley’s libraires (Halewood, Huyton, Kirkby, Prescot and Stockbridge Village) to find out more:

Monday            10am until 5pm

Tuesday           10am until 5pm

Wednesday      10am until 5pm

Thursday          10am until 5pm

Friday               10am until 5pm

Saturday           10am until 1pm

If you’re struggling with debt or money worries, it is important to know there is a wide range of support available to help you, including advice on dealing with debts and getting your finances back into shape.

Knowsley Council

Call the council’s dedicated Financial Advice line on 0151 443 3300 to find out more about free sources of money and debt advice, and credit unions or visit the Knowsley Council website for more advice on money, benefits and dealing with debt.

Citizens Advice Knowsley

Contact the Citizens Advice Debt Advice Team on 0808 278 7839 or contact them email. They will work with you to find a solution to your debt issues. Online self-referral is also available here.

Money Helper

Residents in financial difficulty can access money and debt guidance for free. Money Helper UK provides guidance based upon individual circumstances and help find support in their area.

There is information on:

·       what issues individuals need to deal with first

·       ways of staying on top of bills

·       how to find extra support

·       where to get extra help

More information:
https://www.moneyhelper.org.uk/en/money-troubles

The Big Help Project

Knowsley charity the Big Help Project offer the Jubilee Debt Advice service to support people with their debt issues. Contact them via the online form or call 0151 482 6089.

StepChange

For free debt support and advice visit the StepChange website or call the helpline on 0800 138 1111.

Loan Sharks

A loan shark is someone who runs a money lending business without permission from the Financial Conduct Authority (FCA).

Anyone who believes they might be the victim of a loan shark can contact the Stop Loan Sharks 24-hour confidential helpline on 0300 555 2222, email reportaloanshark@stoploansharks.gov.uk or complete an online report form. Live Chat is available on the website 9am-5pm weekdays.

The Stop Loan Sharks app is free to download on both iOS and Android devices from the Apple App Store and Google Play Store.

How to spot a scam

Scams include texts or emails mimicking genuine support packages and include fake cost of living payments, bank card refund scams, bogus energy and council tax rebates and phoney competitions are growing as fraudsters try to capitalise on the cost of living crisis.

How to spot a scam

Ask yourself the questions below, if you answer yes to any of them, there’s a good chance it’s a scam.

Trust your instincts and protect yourself – if you aren’t sure, don’t share ANY personal details.

Hang up, close the door, delete the text /email and call the company to confirm – not on a number given to you by a potential scammer.

  • Have you been contacted out of the blue?
  • Have you been asked to share personal or bank details?
  • Are the contact details vague, such as premium phone number or a PO box?
  • Are you being asked to keep it a secret?
  • Does it sound too good to be true?
  • Are you feeling pressured to make a decision?
  • Are there spelling or grammar mistakes?
  • Is this the correct email address? Check the sender to see if it looks wrong!

If you’re concerned and think you’re trying to be scammed, contact Knowsley Council’s Trading Standards team on 0151 443 2885.

Further information and advice can be found at:-

tradingstandards.uk or by calling 0808 223 1133

actionfraud.police.uk or by calling 0300 123 2040

Feeding yourself a family on a budget is extremely challenging – particularly at this time of year with rising energy bills and the cost of living pressures placed on everyone - but there are a range of low-cost, healthy recipes available for you to try.

Below are just a small selection:-

Tesco’s budget recipes include budget meals for 4, lunch recipes, kids’ meals, ideas for meals with ingredients you have and budget swaps to reduce the cost of meals.

Asda’s Good Living Guide offers easy bakes for under 50p and a range of meals for under £1 per head.

Aldi provide an range of budget-friendly autumn recipes.

Lidl shares a range of seasonal recipes as well as 5 meals for £20.

Sainsbury’s share a range of ‘on a budget’ recipes.

Morrisons share their recipes for meals on a budget.

Good to know offer recipe ideas for under £1 per head.

My Foodbank shares 30 budget dinner meal ideas.

BBC’s Good Food Guide shares 40 budget healthy meals.

Gambling support

When money is tight, we know it can be hard to resist the lure of ‘easy money’. But gambling is never the answer.

Gamble Aware offer free, confidential help and support to anyone who is worried about their (or someone else’s) gambling.

Visit www.begambleaware.org to find out more or call 0808 8020 133.

Drug issues

If you care concerned that you have a drug problem of if you’re worried about a family member or friend, contact Knowsley Drug and Alcohol Integrated Recovery Service on 0151 482 6291 or 07780 495742 out of hours for free and confidential help and support.

Advice and support is also available on the Talk to Frank website or by calling 0300 123 6600.

Alcohol issues

Having an odd drink may help you to unwind feel better in the short-term, but longer term, it can make your issues much worse.

You’re advised not to drink more than 14 units of alcohol per week – that’s equivalent to 6 pints of average strength beer or 10 small glasses of lower-strength wine.

If you’re struggling to have alcohol free days, help and support is available. Contact Knowsley Integrated Recover Service on 0151 482 6291 or 07780 495742 out of hours for free and confidential

Energy Relief Scheme

The Government has announced support for businesses and non-domestic customers. The scheme provides energy bill relief and discounts will be applied to energy usage initially between 1 October 2022 and 31 March 2023. The scheme will be available to everyone on a non-domestic contract including:

  • businesses
  • voluntary sector organisations, such as charities
  • public sector organisations such as schools, hospitals and care homes

who are:

  • on existing fixed price contracts that were agreed on or after 1 April 2022
  • signing new fixed price contracts
  • on deemed / out of contract or variable tariffs
  • on flexible purchase or similar contracts

The Government will provide a discount on your gas and electricity unit prices. To calculate your discount, the estimated wholesale portion of the unit price you would be paying this winter will be compared to a baseline ‘government supported price’ which is lower than currently expected wholesale prices this winter.

For all non-domestic energy users in Great Britain this government supported price has been set at:

  • £211 per megawatt hour (MWh) for electricity
  • £75 per MWh for gas

Suppliers will apply reductions to the bills of all eligible non-domestic customers.

Further information can be found on the Government’s website.

Energy savings

There’s also a number of practical steps you could take to reduce your energy costs:-

  1. Standardise working hours ensuring energy use is contained within a certain timeframe.
  2. Ensure equipment is turned off when not in use.
  3. Install energy-efficient lighting.
  4. Add smart meters to monitor consumption.

Control costs

  1. Assess all costs – by completing a thorough review of all costs, you could identify those that could be cut or identify a cheaper alternative.
  2. Source locally which will save on import costs.

Support employees

Everyone is feeling the impact of the cost of living, including your staff:-

  1. Sign up to corporate staff discount schemes with the benefits passed on to your staff with savings in supermarkets or meals out.
  2. Provide staff with tea, coffee, milk or food items (such as tins of soup) for them to use whilst at work.

Focus on customers

  1. Everyone is reviewing their spend, including your customers. You could look at ways to maintain their custom by introducing loyalty schemes and introducing payment instalments to help to spread the cost of buying.

Help and support

Call 0151 477 4000 to speak to a member of Knowsley Council's Business Growth Team who can provide a range of advice and information.

Invest Knowsley Events

To coincide with the British Business Bank's Finance Week, Knowsley’s Business Growth Team has developed the Funding Business Growth and Investing to Save event for established businesses within the borough. As businesses respond to changes in the global economy it can be daunting to consider taking on investment.

Experienced investment managers George Wright and Jeff Cummins will give an overview of the investment landscape in Liverpool City Region and the importance of being prepared and ‘investment ready’ before pursuing finance.

Find out more here 

Community Catch-Up

Thursdays 1-3pm at One Knowsley, The Studio, The Courtyard, Court Hey Park, L16 3NA
An opportunity for residents to enjoy a hot drink and find out about what’s happening locally, and how to get involved - with support from One Knowsley’s Social Prescribing team. No need to book.Contact Info@OneKnowsley.org for more information.

The government has worked with a range of Internet Service Providers (IPSs) and Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) to deliver low-cost broadband and phone service packages, called social tariffs, for those on low incomes.

Social tariffs are available for people claiming Universal Credit, Pension Credit and some other benefits, with some providers offering deals from £15 a month.

Find out more Discounts and offers - Help for Households

The Help for Households campaign homepage brings together over 40 support schemes that the public may be able to access depending on eligibility. There are also online tools for the public to check the support they might be eligible for and how to access it.

In addition to this online support, you can also call the Knowsley Cost of Living helpline on 0151 443 3300. Staff are on-hand to provide support Monday to Friday 9am until 5pm from Monday 21 November 2022.

The team is also available through the online chat facility, available Monday to Friday from 9am until 5pm, accessible through the Council’s website.

Remember, you can also call in to any of the Borough’s libraries – located in Halewood, Huyton, Kirkby, Prescot and Stockbridge Village – between 10am and 5pm Monday to Friday or 10am until 1pm on Saturdays where you can access PCs for free, staff are on-hand to help you get online or just call in for a cuppa and a chat. The Council has extended the opening hours of their libraries, meaning they are all now open six days a week, to provide Warm Hubs during the colder months.

We also know that there are many residents who want to support others – like they did throughout the pandemic and there are a number of simple ways you can support others:-

  • Check-in on your vulnerable neighbours, relatives and friends. For many, you could be their only contact with others so call in and check they are okay, have a cuppa with them and share the support that is available to them.
  • Are you going to the supermarket / into the town centre? Could you offer a lift to a neighbour / relative to help them get to where they need to go to on your way? Maybe suggest you could drop them off at one of the Borough’s libraries that are operating as a Warm Hub? They’ll get a hot drink, company and support to help them to get online.
  • Have you cooked too much and have a spare portion that a vulnerable neighbour, relative or friend would appreciate? Consider sharing what’s left over with someone who would really appreciate a hot meal.
  • Knowsley Foodbank provide food to vulnerable residents and particularly in the run-up to Christmas, stocks usually run low. Could you add a few extra tins of soup or some pasta into your weekly shop to donate to the Foodbank? Or could you make a financial donation for the Foodbank to purchase supplies? You can find out items they need and your local drop-off on the Foodbank’s website.
  • The Big Help Project is running a ‘Winter Warmth’ initiative and are looking for donations of warm coats, blankets, gloves, hats, scarves, hot water bottles, hand warmers, socks, flask and thermal wear. You can drop-off any clean items at the Big Help Community Shops in Huyton, Prescot, Kirkby, Bootle or Knotty Ash – please clearly label your bag/bags as being “Warm Welcome Centre Donations”.
  • Take a look at the range of volunteering opportunities that are available across the Borough, supporting local communities, which can be found on One Knowsley’s website.

The Fire Service has shared advice the dangers of using alternative ways to heat your home. The website has guidance and safety advice to help prevent accidental fires and information on fire safety checks.

Livv Housing Group  is supporting its residents through the cost of living crisis and has compiled all the support available. It is also offering support through its Advisory Services Team.

For Housing residents who are experiencing financial difficulty can get in touch with their team via email livewell@forhousing.co.uk or by phone 0300 123 5522

A Good Life-  Help for people in Knowsley facing challenges in their lives working with individuals, services and community groups tackling the crisis and resolving immediate issues; building knowledge, skills and resilience. Developing the foundations for A Good Life. https://www.kdc.org.uk/a-good-life-2/

 

Increased funding support to Voluntary, Community, Faith and Social Enterprise organisations
Contact Info@OneKnowsley.org for more information

Voluntary, Community, Faith and Social Enterprise Sector Wellness Response Forum

Mondays 10am-11.30am (via Zoom)
A chance for people working in the VCFSE sector to discuss any challenges they are facing, and to find potential solutions.
Contact Info@OneKnowsley.org to join

VCFSE Sector Enrichment

Fridays 12-2pm at One Knowsley, The Courtyard, Court Hey Park, L16 3NA
A flexible programme of workshops to respond to the changing needs of the sector, including; funding, financial resilience, mental health, and wellbeing, caring for our workforce and volunteers, health and safety, GDPR and budget forecasting.
All volunteers and paid VCFSE sector staff welcome.
Contact Info@OneKnowsley.org for more information.

The Simple Payment Plan was created for those in financial difficulty.

Qualifying customers can choose from either a fortnightly or monthly payment plan that spreads the cost of a TV Licence over 12 months, this means you make smaller payments more frequently, helping you to better manage your finances.

TV Licensing accepts referrals to the Simple Payment Plan from not-for-profit organisations such as charities or your local authority money advice department. It cannot accept referrals from commercial organisations.

If you would like to speak to someone about your finances, you can contact your local authority debt advice team or there are many not-for-profit organisations offering free, confidential and independent advice. Any not-for-profit organisation providing this service can refer you to us to join the Simple Payment Plan.

More information on the simple payment plan and how to access it can be found here.

There are other TV licence concessions, which you might be eligible for depending on your circumstances. There are concessions available for: