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The cost of living in a rural area

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People living in rural areas are having to spend thousands more on household essentials such as groceries, electricity and petrol – around £3,300 more than the national average in fact.

The cost of living has been rising a third faster than the national average for those living outside urban areas, according to a recent report cited in the Eastern Daily Press. People living in rural areas face challenges in travelling sustainably, with lack of public transport and It’s estimated that rural residents pay an extra £535 a year on petrol, diesel and motor oil.

Rik Martin, development manager for Community Action Norfolk, said:  "It's not just the cost, but the consequences that concern us. It is the increases in loneliness and isolation and mental health issues that result from lack of funds and opportunity. And the loss of family support and care that result when lack of affordable homes drive family further away, and the difficulties of accessing family and friends and health care when there are only two buses per week.”

“Whilst we work with communities to deliver local support and local activities there is much more to do and we need more investment and a greater commitment to make a difference to those most affected."

CAN tackles the problem of the costs of heating homes and businesses in off-gas area with our well-established ThinkingFuel  collective oil buying scheme, making competitively priced heating oil available across Norfolk. And several agencies are combatting social isolation and loneliness across the county – find out more about what CAN is doing in the north of the county at CANConnect.