GREEN DOCTORS PROVIDING TIMELY FREE ADVICE TO HELP DARLINGTON RESIDENTS REDUCE ENERGY BILLS
With households across Darlington increasingly feeling the pinch on the back of the rising cost of heating, food, and other day-to-day living expenses, community organisation The Green Doctors is inviting local people to come along to one its drop-in sessions during September and October to receive free advice about how to reduce their bills this winter.
The sessions, being held at eight locations across the borough, are being funded by Northern Powergrid, the company that powers everyday life for 8 million people across the North East, Yorkshire and northern Lincolnshire. The network operator is currently carrying out a £9 million investment to improve the reliability and resilience of the power network serving the Darlington area. Working in partnership with Darlington Council, Northern Powergrid is funding the sessions as part of its commitment to being a force for good in the communities it operates in.
Every year, The Green Doctors help thousands of households save money on their energy and water bills and also provides advice on how people can make their homes warmer and healthier at the same time. At the Darlington drop in sessions, residents can chat to a friendly expert about ways to reduce energy bills, make their homes more energy efficient, maximise their income and potentially access grants and other support. This advice is free and available to everyone living in any type of property, be that housing association homes, council properties, privately rented or privately owned.
The Green Doctors sessions are running in tandem with The Bread and Butter Thing (TBBT), a charity that operates weekly hubs where local people can access quality affordable food.
For just £7.50, TBBT members’ shopping bags are filled with a minimum of £35 worth of items made up of quality nutritious food. Each week members access three bags of produce including fresh fruit and veg, chilled goods for the fridge, as well as cupboard staples such as pasta and cereal. Families can use their NHS Healthy Start vouchers and low-cost period products are also available.
The Green Doctors drop ins and TBBT hubs are working together to deliver the following joint sessions:
- Elim Pentecostal Church, Bowman Street, DL3 OHE 2:00pm – 3:00pm – Mondays 5 September, 3 October
- Red Hall Primary School, Headingley Crescent, DL1 2ST _ 1:15pm – 2:15pm – Thursdays 8 September, 6 October
- The Cockerton Club, Woodland Road, DL3 9AB - 1:15pm – 2:15pm – Tuesdays 13 September, 11 October
- Firthmoor Community Centre, Burnside Road, DL1 4SU - 1:15pm – 2:15pm – Fridays 16 September, 14 October
- Skerne Park Youth & Community Centre, DL1 5AN - 11:15am – 12:15pm – Tuesdays 20 September, 18 October
- Corporation Road Primary School, DL3 6AD - 2:00pm – 3:00pm – Wednesdays 21 September, 19 October
- The Well Methodist Church, 164 North Road, DL1 5TD - 1.15pm – 2:15pm – Wednesdays 28 September, 26 October
- Eastbourne Community Hub, Eastbourne Park, DL1 4AY - 1:45pm – 2:45pm – Thursdays 29 September, 27 October
Michelle Cummings, Northern Powergrid’s social responsibility manager, said: “We’re now over a year into our three-year investment to improve the reliability and resilience of Darlington’s electricity network. Our work will also help ensure there’s more capacity to support the demand for power as the population grows and people become more reliant on electricity to work, power their businesses, heat their homes and charge electric vehicles.
“This is a complex scheme requiring us to excavate in the roadway and footpath along a 6km route. We know that works of this nature can be disruptive and that’s why we’re always keen to give something back to local communities impacted by our investment works.”
Michelle continued: “People are becoming increasingly concerned about how they will be able manage rising food and energy bills, especially when winter comes, and we’re encouraging anyone who’s worried to head down to one of these events and have a chat to one of the very friendly, helpful and knowledgeable experts from The Green Doctors and The Bread and Butter Thing.”
Northern Powergrid offers free Priority Services Membership for anyone who might need extra advice and support in a power cut. To find our more or join visit northernpowergrid.com/care or call 0800 169 2996.
The Green Doctors can be contacted on freephone 0808 168 3547 or 0113 238 0601 or email firstname.lastname@example.org
People interested in using The Bread and Butter Thing’s affordable food service need to register as members and should contact TBBT by email at email@example.com or text 07860 063304. There is also a sign-up form and more information at www.breadandbutterthing.org/contact.
Northern Powergrid’s network-related charges which appear on customers’ bills from their chosen energy supplier remain at around 25p a day for the average domestic customer. As part of the network operator’s commitment to being a force for good beyond its network which powers peoples’ everyday lives, it has a range of partnerships which can support customers with energy and debt worries. Find out more at northernpowergrid.com/force-for-good