Peter Grant, MP for Glenrothes and Central Fife, highlighted his constituents’ complaints regarding the system for triggering Cold Weather Payments to UK Government Minister, Andrea Leadsom, in the House of Commons last month.
Mr Grant also asked if Andrea Leadsom’s colleague, Esther McVey, the Work & Pensions Secretary, could make a statement to the House on the issue.
A number of constituents contacted Mr Grant following the recent extreme weather which saw all schools across Fife closed for four full days and left many snowed in and unable to use cars and public transport services to leave their houses and flats.
Mr Grant told the House: “Constituents of mine in most of my constituency were astonished to discover that it wasn’t cold enough to trigger the payments during a week in which they were under two to three feet of snow, travel of any kind was impossible and they were subject to Scotland’s first-ever red alert due to the danger from snow and ice.”
Constituents lost out because of a postcode lottery under which entitlement to Cold Weather Payments for residents in KY6, KY7 and KY8 postcodes depends not on the temperature in any of those areas but on the temperature at a weather station in Leuchars – some 20 miles away from Glenrothes. Leuchars, as well is being on the coast, is roughly 50 feet above sea level while parts of Glenrothes are about 600 feet above.
In a letter to the Work & Pensions Secretary, Mr Grant has asked that when the next review of weather stations takes place that considerations can be made for the KY6, KY7 and KY8 postcodes so they are never again denied the financial support that has rightly been given to others.
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