Funding secured for new scheme to cut energy bills

Funding secured for new scheme to cut energy bills

Tunbridge Wells Borough Council has been successful in its joint bid for funding from the Department of Energy and Climate Change’s competition ‘Cheaper Energy Together’. In collaboration with Gravesham, Dartford and Dover local authorities, we have been awarded £20,700 to develop and promote a collective switching scheme across the four authorities.

The funding will help the four authorities to set up a scheme for their local areas, which will assist households to switch energy supplier and get a better deal on their energy bills. The scheme will enable consumers to group together and use their combined market power to negotiate a lower energy tariff and aims to make the process easy for first-time switchers to take up the money-saving opportunity. The funding will also aim to reduce fuel poverty across the four local authorities and to help reach government targets.

The ‘Cheaper Energy Together’ competition was described by the Department of Energy and Climate Change as “heavily oversubscribed”. With only £5 million available 114 bids were received, requesting £14.8 million of funding. Money has been awarded to 31 successful projects, covering over 94 local councils and eight third sector organisations in Great Britain.

The scheme is in the early stages of development across the four councils, but the aim is to be up and running in spring 2013. Details of how residents can become involved will be available on each council’s website soon.

Councillor Paul Barrington-King has said, ‘I am delighted that we have been awarded this funding to kick-start the development of a new initiative which has the potential to help our residents access the best energy deals on the market.’