September 18, 2012

Millions of pounds in grants aimed at helping poorer families reduce their winter fuel bills have been left unclaimed, according to a report by the Guardian.

The money, available under the Government’s Warm Front scheme, has been set aside to help homeowners install insulation and draft proofing, and improve out-of-date heating systems.

Households on certain income-related benefits can claim up to £3,500 from the scheme or up to £6,000 if they use oil central heating or an equivalent alternative technology.

But, the report states, the scheme under-spent by more than £50m last year, meaning thousands of poorer households are missing out on money that is rightfully theirs.

Duncan Lambert, a director of, Rix Petroleum, said homeowners had just a small window in which to apply for the grants as they are being phased out soon.

He said: “There is a lot of money left in the pot and if it doesn’t get spent it may just go back to the Treasury to be used in other budgets, which means few people will have seen the benefit of the scheme. But with autumn upon us, and temperatures starting to decline, now is the optimum time to apply.”

Rix Petroleum has more than 80 years’ experience supplying heating oil to rural households and can deliver in any quantity from a 500-litre small tanker to a 36,000-litre articulated truck.

Mr Lambert added: “Heating oil is a clean burning fuel and is ideal for home heating, so if homeowners can access the Warm Front scheme to help them afford new, efficient heating systems, they should be able to remain cosy this winter without breaking the bank.”

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