Milton Keynes Council to prepare ‘emergency warm spaces’ for winter

    The Progressive Alliance which runs Milton Keynes Council is to prepare an 'emergency plan' that will provide warm spaces for people during the winter.

    It comes amid growing concerns for people's health as energy bills rise.

    Milton Keynes Council has said it is also facing massive rises in energy costs for heating public buildings and powering street lighting.

    Amid concerns, the Council Leadership says it has now pledged to work to create a network of emergency warm spaces to ensure people have somewhere warm to go over winter if they cannot afford to heat their home.

    As part of the plan by The Progressive Alliance, public buildings, like libraries, could host people who need a warm space.

    The Council will work with other partners to make their buildings available too.

    Cllr Peter Marland, Leader of MK Council, said: “The ongoing increase in prices will likely see household energy bills hit over £5,000 in January. The lack of a clear plan from the Government on how to deal with the issue means the Council must prepare for winter and have an emergency plan in place to keep people warm.”

    READ MORE: Labour and Lib Dem councillors in Milton Keynes back calls for energy price cap freeze

    Cllr Jane Carr, Cabinet Member for the Cost of Living Crisis, said: “MK Council is facing massive inflation in our own costs and this is putting a huge strain on our budget. However, while we have no choice but to keep the lights on, many people are facing an impossible choice and without having an emergency energy plan in place, people will die or suffer illnesses because they cannot get warm.

    “MK Council resources are stretched but our first step will be to ensure that those in the most need have somewhere warm to go. So, we will be looking at what we can do to ensure the buildings we are heating anyway can be used to provide warm spaces for people who need it. We will also be reaching out to partners to see if we can build a network of these warm spaces.”

    Cllr Peter Marland concluded: “It is truly shocking that after months and months of warnings on energy bills, we have a zombie Government and two potential Prime Ministers with no plan on how to deal with this crisis. We are one of the richest counties in the world and we are talking about having to open public buildings to stop people freezing to death. What has this country come to? It is a consequence of 12 years of Conservative government.

    “The Progressive Alliance will work to curb the worst possible impacts of this crisis, but we cannot do it all and the country needs leadership with a grip on reality to deal with the current mess.”

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