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Applications to the government's Energy Bill Support Scheme – Alternative Funding (EBSS AF) went live on Monday 27 February, to provide certain households with further help towards their energy costs.

Huntingdonshire District Council is urging residents to apply for the EBSS Alternative Funding if they are eligible.

EBSS Alternative Funding means that households who didn't receive the original energy bills support, such as those without their own electricity meter or without a direct relationship to an electricity supplier, can receive a £400 support payment.

Households eligible to apply for support under EBSS Alternative Funding include park home residents, tenants who pay for their energy through a landlord with a commercial supply, partly and wholly self-funded care home residents, houseboats on residential moorings, households on a private electricity network, off-grid households, traveller households on authorised sites and domestic farmhouses paying on a commercial supply.

If you don't heat your home with mains gas and use an alternative fuel which could include oil, biomass and bottled gas, you might also be able to get an additional £200 payment, known as the Alternative Fuel Payment (AFP). Residents can apply for the Energy Bill Support Scheme – Alternative Funding (EBSS AF) until Wednesday 31 May. A dedicated helpline is also available for residents who need support to complete an application or cannot apply online. The freephone number, 0808 175 3287, is open from 8am - 6pm, Monday to Friday.

Once an application has been made, The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero (DESNZ) will make a series of checks. Once those checks have been completed, the details are then given a final check by Huntingdonshire District Council to ensure that the resident lives at the address they have provided. You will be told about the progress of your application by email or letter. You should get a response within six weeks. If you are eligible, we will arrange a one-off payment. You do not need to repay this money.

Executive Councillor for Customer Services, Councillor Stephen Ferguson, said: "We are pleased to be able to provide more much-needed help to certain households within the district.

"Households within Huntingdonshire who didn't receive the original energy bills support the usual way, such as those without a direct contract with an electricity supplier, are encouraged to come forward so that they can receive their payment as soon as possible.

"The EBSS Alternative Funding aims to reach those that did not receive the support in the original scheme but are still responsible for paying energy bills through their rent or other means.

"Households will never be asked to apply for EBSS Alternative Funding or Alternative Fuel Payment by email or text."

For further advice on financial support please visit our Helping Hand page.