Prime minister addresses Blackpool fuel poverty

Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden
Blackpool South MP Gordon Marsden
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BLACKPOOL South MP Gordon Marsden has probed the Prime Minister over the resort’s fuel poverty.

Speaking at Wednesday’s Prime Minister’s Questions, labour MP Mr Marsden questioned Prime Minister David Cameron over the government’s Green Deal, which offers householders a long-term loans to help make their homes more energy efficient.

Although launched this week, Mr Marsden said the government had all year to promote the scheme, where households could use loans to buy insulation a boilers, yet only five people in the country had taken it up.

He said: “Mr Speaker, thousands of my Blackpool constituents in poorly insulated homes fear sky-high cold weather bills. The government’s Green Deal has seven per cent interest charges, and only five households have singed up for it.

“How did the Prime Minister achieve this fiasco?”

Responding to the question, Mr Cameron said: “First of all, I say to the honourable gentleman I hope that he will welcome the green deal, because it gives house holders the opportunity to cut their bills and cut their costs with absolutely no up front costs.

“He should be encouraging his constituents to do that.

“This has only just begun. The ECO, the Energy Company Obligation, also provides the opportunity to help insulate some 230 thousand homes a year, compared with 80,000 under Warm Front.

“Instead of talking down these schemes, he should be encouraging constituents to take them up.”

For more on this story see Thursday’s Gazette.