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7 November 2012, 14:21 | Updated: 7 November 2012, 14:25
Nearly 700 city households have signed up to Norwich’s Big Switch and Save in only the first two weeks of the scheme.
Launched by Norwich City Council on Monday 22 October, the pioneering project is a collective switching scheme which aims to harness people power to drive down the costs of energy bills.
Every single household within the Norwich City Council boundary stands to benefit.
The beauty of Norwich’s Big Switch and Save is that it's free, it’s quick and easy and there are no obligations.
Householders simply register, using the information from a recent energy bill. After the registration period has closed, we work with a specialist switching partner to take our group to a one-day auction to negotiate the best possible deal.
Every household which registered will then receive either an email or letter telling them exactly how much they stand to save. It’s then completely up to each householder to decide whether to go ahead and make the final switch.
Bert Bremner, cabinet member with responsibility for environmental strategy, said: “It's worth everyone's while to sign up to find out how much they stand to save. It’s really pleasing to see so many people doing just that already.
“Whatever your income, every household will appreciate saving money on utility bills, particularly when a number of companies have recently announced putting charges up by around eight per cent.
“We want to help every household in Norwich maximise their income and we especially want out reach out to the estimated 10,000 homes which we believe are facing fuel poverty this winter.”
Financial experts generally agree that switching suppliers will save you money. However, switching on your own can be complicated and time consuming - our scheme overcomes this because we do all that complex and lengthy work - all people have to do is register, then sit back and save.
Norwich’s Big Switch and Save is primarily an online initiative with built-in assistance for those who may have difficulty negotiating the website registration form. Local libraries offer free internet access and additionally people can use a friend’s computer and email address to sign up if they wish.
Log on to www.norwich.gov.uk and click on the Big Switch and Save banner at the top of the page to access the online registration form. You will need an energy bill handy to apply. Help and support for online registrants is available on 0800 0988994. Registration is open until Sunday 25 November, emails will be sent announcing the energy deal on or around Friday 30 November and people will have until Wednesday 19 December to decide whether to switch.
There is a limited facility for those people who wish to register ‘offline’ in paper format. For more information contact us on 0344 9803333. Offline registration closes on Friday 16 November and this group of people will have until Friday 14 December to make the final switch.
The scheme has been launched as part of the city council's corporate priority to make Norwich a prosperous city. The aim of the Big Switch and Save is to help people maximise their income by saving money and to help alleviate fuel poverty. Tips are also available on how to save energy.