A HELPING hand is being offered to try and improve conditions for people living in cold, damp homes throughout North Yorkshire by campaign group Warm and Well.

They say up to 30,000 households across the county, over 11 per cent of all homes are believed to be in fuel poverty.

And they are supporting the charity National Energy Action in their warm homes campaign to target residents in cold or damp homes and people affected by winter health problems.

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Campaigners say vulnerable people are being hit hard, including older people and those in ill-health, on low incomes and living in energy inefficient homes that are difficult and expensive to heat.

North Yorkshire co-ordinator Laura Thomas said people could refer themselves or it could be done through a family member, neighbour , friend or services such as Age UK and Citizens Advice.

North Yorkshire has been targeted because of the large number of elderly and older residents - by 2025 up to 27 per cent of the county’s population will be over 65.

Some are also thought to be at risk because they are living in older or badly maintained properties.

“Living in a cold damp home can lead to extremely poor health, especially in those who are vulnerable such as older people, young children, and those with long term sickness and disabilities.

"Stagnant earnings, rising inflation, limited welfare and high energy prices are the perfect storm,” said Ms Thomas.

To book an appointment or for further information about the help available call 01609-776551 or 01609-767555 or go to warmandwell.org.uk/Referral-Form .