I had no idea that winter fuel payments were paid to those abroad. This article made me think about the balance in tackling fuel poverty between helping those in greatest need and providing winter fuel payments as a universal benefit. It tells us:

Thousands of British expats living in Europe are lobbying MPs in Britain in the hope they can continue to receive their winter fuel payments. Many are sending pictures showing icy, snowy homes and landscapes.

Under Government plans, this winter is the last in which payments will be made to Britons living in Portugal, Spain, Greece, France, Gibraltar, Malta and Cyprus.

Legislation going through Parliament now will mean the payments – which are between £200 and £300 per year – will end because those countries are deemed too warm.

But expats have been bombarding MPs and others with desperate pleas to overturn the change and retain the payment.

They argue the “temperature test” is unfair because it includes (in the case of France) averaged temperatures across both mainland France and hot, far-flung French territories such as Martinique in the Caribbean or Reunion, near Madagascar.

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