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How to control costs

In MP Justin Tomlinson’s regular Adver column last Friday, he extolled the virtue of competition in the energy industry, switching if you prefer, in order to control runaway energy costs.

If you believe passionately in a market economy, as Justin and his colleagues do, then this is a legitimate and from personal experience a seemingly effective tool to manage energy prices for the savvy and better off.

However in a civilised and caring society it is necessary on occasions to intervene in the market and even most Conservatives quizzed would agree with this. But actions speak louder than words and in Justin’s case just 19 rather vague words at the tail end of a long 558 word article!

I am referring to the poorest and most vulnerable among us, who are forced into paying for energy, IN ADVANCE, on top up keys. I work with one or two families like this and believe me they cannot switch, they don’t get offered the very best tariffs and their suppliers are not that interested in installing smart meters.

So Justin, if you really want to help these families on the worst tariffs it’s simple… request the regulator intervene and require that that all families forced to pay in advance for energy on keys, enjoy at least a 5% lower price than the very best credit terms suppliers offer to their other customers. Job done, fairness prevails and the fact they are preventing from switching becomes irrelevant. Oh and I can assure him that a key running down at 11pm is a far better incentive to be prudent in energy use than any smart metering ever conceived by man.

John Stooke, Haydon End, Swindon

Ignore the negativity

At last the Prime Minister has spoken some sense and said a referendum on the final terms of withdrawal from the EU would be a “gross betrayal of our democracy”.

The whole Brexit farce has given remoaners too much time to spread negativity and pessimism. Our withdrawal from the EU should have been much cleaner and quicker giving the Negative Normans less chance to spread doom, gloom and fake news.

Wouldn’t it also be nice if the 54.7% of Swindonians that voted to leave in the referendum would now ditch their European cars and purchase Swindon made Hondas. This would be a true sign of loyalty to the Swindon workers at Honda.

Finally, how to tell the difference in a pub between a remoaner and a brexiteer: A brexiteer’s glass is half full and a remoaner’s is half empty!

Mr A Collins, Broome Manor Lane, Swindon

Not children’s fault

How on earth can the council blame vulnerable children for the £3m overspend? Whatever happened to Children in Need and Red Nose Day? Has there been any application made to these charities, because Swindon people put into collections every year. No way should children have to suffer.

Roy Small, Haydon Wick

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