Winter Fuel Allowance ‘won't be scrapped’ to help pay for state pension triple lock, Government confirms

Pensioner with energy bills looks at thermostat

The Winter Fuel Allowance is intended to help people who have reached state pension age with the cost of heating in the winter

Jessica Sheldon

By Jessica Sheldon

Published: 29/09/2023

- 17:06

Updated: 29/09/2023

- 17:36

The Winter Fuel Allowance, also known as a Winter Fuel Payment, is intended to help pensioners with their energy bills

The Government has denied reports that ministers are considering scrapping the Winter Fuel Allowance for all but the poorest pensioners as a measure to retain the state pension triple lock.

It comes after Sky News reported that the Prime Minister is trying to find ways to cover the cost of the state pension triple lock commitment in the future, with officials reportedly drawing up proposals to remove the annual Winter Fuel Allowance for most pensioners.

The channel reported that the poorest on Pension Credit support would continue to get the allowance, which is typically worth up to £300 but is currently up to £600 as it includes the cost of living payments for pensioner households.

However, Number 10 sources are understood to have distanced themselves from suggestions that the proposal was being considered.

The government spends an extra £11billion a year due to the triple lock, compared to the payment rising in line with prices of earnings, according to research by the Institute for Fiscal Studies (IFS) this month.

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak in picture

Prime Minister Rishi Sunak swerved calls to guarantee the state pension triple lock in the Tory manifesto earlier this month


The Liberal Democrats have urged the Prime Minister not to consider any move to scrap the allowance.

The party’s work and pensions spokesperson Wendy Chamberlain said it would be a “slap in the face for pensioners facing soaring energy bills this winter”.

She said: “Rishi Sunak must be living on another planet if he thinks this is the answer to the country’s problems. Pensioners have worked hard and paid their taxes all their lives, they shouldn’t be made to pay the price for the Conservative Party crashing the economy.”

Simon Francis, co-ordinator of the End Fuel Poverty Coalition, said scrapping the Winter Fuel Allowance for all but the poorest would be a “death sentence” for pensioners.

What do you think? If you want to share your view on the state pension or Winter Fuel Allowance, get in touch by emailing

He said: “Last year alone we saw around 5,000 excess winter deaths caused by living in cold, damp homes. Many more saw their health conditions deteriorate.

"Now Rishi Sunak wants to condemn more pensioners to live in these conditions.

“Energy bills are likely to stay high for the next two years according to expert predictions so this proposal – even if it only starts next year – is highly dangerous.”

A Government spokesperson told GB News: "That is not something we are going to do.”

Energy bills being read by person

The Winter Fuel Allowance is usually paid in November or December


What is the Winter Fuel Allowance?

The Winter Fuel Allowance, or Winter Fuel Payment, is a payment intended to help pensioners pay their heating bills. Eligibility rules apply, but those who were born before September 25, 1957, can get it.

Most eligible people will get the Winter Fuel Payment automatically and will receive a letter in October or November stating how much they will get.

They will usually be paid in November or December.

If a person doesn't get a letter but thinks they're eligible, they are directed to check if they need to make a claim.

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