Energy bills: ‘We cut back but are paying three times as much’

Amy Appleyard had been paying £136 a month to heat and light her home.

Knowing that energy bills would rise in the autumn, she and her family had cut back on how much power they were using.

But they were shocked to be told that their monthly direct debit would rise more than three times to £442.

They are just one of many UK households who have cut back on energy but are still being charged higher direct debits. But suppliers say bills have to reflect soaring energy prices.

It comes after Business Secretary Grant Shapps wrote to energy firms asking them to ensure bills reflected the amount of energy customers were using, and not to over-estimate charges.

Mrs Appleyard, her husband Mike and eight-year-old daughter Kathryn, faced the huge hike in direct debit energy payments despite cutting back at their three-bedroom home in Greater Manchester.

“We’ve all come a bit more obsessive about turning off lights or unplugging chargers,” Mrs Appleyard said.

“We also didn’t put the heating…

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