A HOME heating support fund which will help Scots struggling with their energy bills amid a growing cost-of-living crisis has been welcomed by Irvine’s MSP.

Individual households in Scotland can also now apply directly to the £4million Scottish Government fund at www.homeheatingadvice.scot/household-registration to help them with soaring energy bills.

Last year, a poll found that nearly a third of Scots had rationed their energy use so they could afford to spend money on other goods and services.

With recent price rises and a further steep increase in bills due in April, there are growing concerns about the impact on households. The £4million Scottish Government scheme, which is administered by national advice service Advice Direct Scotland, is designed to prevent households falling into fuel poverty and help those ‘rationing’ their energy use.

Ruth Maguire MSP said: “The steep rise in energy costs and the impact this will have on households, in my constituency and across Scotland, is concerning and so I welcome this targeted support to help those who are struggling the most with their energy costs.

“Although I do not doubt households across my constituency are going to feel the effect of these increases, it is particularly worrying for those on low incomes.

“I would encourage any constituent who is struggling with the cost of their energy bills to reach out for help. Most people will find it easier to apply to the scheme via a local referral partner, however household applications can be made directly at www.homeheatingadvice.scot . This website also provides to search function to find local referral organisations who can help with applications.”

Registrations for help can be made until March 31, and more than 400 charities, organisations and advisers have already signed up as ‘referral partners’ so they can make applications on behalf of their clients. Applications can be made on behalf of individuals by referral partners through homeheatingadvice.scot.

Anyone struggling with the application can contact Advice Direct Scotland advisers for free on 0808 800 9060, who can also make applications to the fund on their behalf.