HC Deb 12 February 1997 vol 290 c251W
Mr. Steen

To ask the Secretary of State for Social Security what measures he has taken to help the elderly during the winter months in each of the last three years; and at what cost. [15385]

Mr. Roger Evans

During the last three years, help has been available to pensioners awarded income support through the social fund cold weather payments scheme. This gives help towards additional heating costs during sustained periods of very cold weather. Estimates of benefit expenditure for each of the last three years are as follows:

Year Total cold weather payments expenditure Estimated expenditure to pensioners
1993–94 12,400 6,3741
1994–95 77 391
1995–96 61,600 31,1081
1 Estimated expenditure figures for pensioners are based on the income support quarterly statistical enquiry at February 1994, 1995, and 1996. Families with children under five, disabled people and pensioners on income support were eligible for cold weather payments. Expenditure on pensioners has been estimated on a pro rata basis.
Expenditure figures rounded to nearest £1,000.