Age Concern Insurance Services, part of the charity working for elderly people, is offering a free guide to protect your home and maintain it.

Its handy hints guide offers simple, practical advice on keeping your home secure, as well as detailing routine checks home-owners need to make to make sure that their property is ready for winter.

The guide includes sections on preparing for winter, going away from home, what to do if your home is damaged by a storm, and advice if a pipe freezes and bursts.

Age Concern's guide comes on the eve of the tenth anniversary of the October 1987 storms which caused more than pounds 1.5bn of damage throughout the UK.

Although the ferocity of those storms was such that it would have been impossible to prevent large-scale disasters, the charity believe these tips could do much to prevent the more minor damage that occurs whenever bad weather strikes.

For further information or to receive the free guide, phone 0354 697 610.