CLOSE to half-a-million households in the UK switched energy supplier last month, figures show.

According to industry body Energy UK, consumers used lockdown to re-examine contracts and find better-value deals for their heating and lighting.

As many as 450,000 people switched in June – slightly higher than the same period last year. Approaching

three million customers have moved to a new supplier in the first half of 2020 – but that’s down almost 4% year-on-year, with a record 6.4m customers switching in 2019.

Emma Pinchbeck, chief executive of Energy UK, said the latest switching stats are “positive”, stating: “I’d encourage everyone to make sure they’re on the best deal either by getting in touch with their current supplier or by shopping around.”

The findings comes as The National continues to encourage readers to find out what they could save by joining our tariff with ethical West Dunbartonshire provider Together Energy.

Using power drawn from renewable sources, the Together Energy Green Brexit Protect 25 Month tariff is aimed at providing security and stability through a period of political and regulatory change for its users, and at fighting fuel poverty.

For every person who signs up to the deal, 10% of The National’s proceeds will be diverted to that cause each month for the duration of the contract. We’ve already donated thousands of pounds to the HEAT project operated by the Wise Group social enterprise, which works to keep people who are struggling with fuel costs connected.

In recent weeks, we’ve shared the stories of some of those to have benefited from lifeline power boosts, including Renfrewshire mother-of-two Zoe Smith, whose debilitating illness leaves her in bed most of the time, and former engineer Paul, a cancer patient whose Coatbridge home had been left without hot water as credit ran out.

We’ve also spoken with people living alone and with small children in a number of communities about their experience of fuel poverty, something thought to affect around one quarter of the country’s households.

The National’s editor, Callum Baird, said: “We’re proud to be making a difference to households affected by fuel poverty – a hidden harm that’s

linked to poor physical and mental health, and a problem that could impact any of us during our lives.

“We can only do this thanks to the support of the readers who have come on board and joined our tariff, which is the first of its kind in Scotland. To all of those people, thank you. I’d like to invite others to visit the dedicated page listed below and consider joining us too.”

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