Pool asks swimmers to consider showering at home to cut its energy bills

Pubs use candles or reduce hours to save electricity

Jane Dalton
Wednesday 28 September 2022 22:20 BST
Energy bill package will cost £60bn in first six months, says chancellor Kwasi Kwarteng

A swimming pool has asked swimmers whether they would shower at home to help it cut its soaring energy bills.

And some pubs are starting to use candlelight only, at least part of the time, as various shops and services try to curb their costs.

Many businesses have reported projected increases in their energy costs of more than 500 per cent and some have already been forced to close.

Jesmond Pool and Gym in Newcastle, which operates as a charity, said in a survey: “We have over 1,000 people from swimming lessons using the showers each week, which uses a considerable amount of water and energy to heat it. Would you consider showering at home instead of the pool?”

According to Chronicle Live, operations manager Phil Drape said: “Our customer survey was sent out in preparation for budgeting for next year when our energy contract ends.

“As it currently stands, we pay 12p per kWh for electricity. The government cap for electricity for businesses for the next six months to be reviewed after three months is 21p per kWh - a 75 per cent increase.

“The last thing we would want is to pass on a price increase to our customers who use leisure for their fitness and wellbeing.”

The Masons Arms, in Camelford, Cornwall, has launched candlelight Mondays to reduce its electricity bills.

Katy Chawner-Woods and Alan Woods, the landlady and landlord, bulk-bought candles for the weekly event.

“Things like the cost of produce is going up hugely. We can’t keep passing it on to the customer, we have to swallow it,” they told The Guardian.

“We’re all in the same boat as small businesses. There’s only so much you can do to help.

“People are all looking at strategies, closing their doors a few days a week, or even permanently.”

He added: “We are going back to 1753, the year The Masons Arms opened.”

The landlord of a pub in north Manchester vowed to operate by candlelight instead of bowing to “crazy” energy price hikes.

Kallum Nolan, of The Crown Inn in Middleton, said he was considering not paying his bill because of a 200 per cent increase next month.

In Wales, food inspectors are concerned that businesses might turn off their fridges in a bid to save money on energy bills.

They said they had received information that some were considering doing so, Wales Online said.

The Thomas Daniell pub in Truro will cut off the power entirely for one day next month and has also been forced to close on Mondays and Tuesdays.

Manager Jamie Hilton-Lavender said: “Everyone’s struggling with the cost of living. It’s getting out of control.”

Football clubs could switch to lunchtime kick-offs in league and FA Cup matches at weekends to avoid using floodlights.

Nearly two-thirds of 40 clubs surveyed said they would consider earlier kick-offs.

Last week, the government announced that energy bills for businesses, charities and the public sector would be roughly halved for six months from next month, under a new temporary cap.

Hospitals and schools would also get help, the government said.

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