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Keep warm and well this winter


Paying the food and fuel bills, coping with young children, or looking after an elderly relative – a few of the challenges people face throughout the year. But as the days get colder and the nights get darker, it’s more important than ever we take steps to take care of ourselves and the people we care about. Be prepared this winter and follow our top tips to stay warm, well and connected.


Keep warm

There are small changes you can make to help keep you and your home warm. These include:

  • Wear extra layers if you’re heading out
  • Keep your windows and curtains closed at night
  • If you have a heating boiler, consider getting it serviced before the cold weather arrives
  • Try to heat rooms you spend a lot of time in to a steady temperature (at least 18°C)
  • Try to reduce draughts: you can fit draft excluders around doors cheaply

Warm spaces

The cold snaps between now and the spring can be difficult, due to increased cost of food, utilities and more. Our partners at Sector Support have put together a list of warm spaces in North East Lincolnshire. Scattered across the Borough, these places offer those in need a warm space with refreshments, activities, and some company. Visit ConnectNEL for more details.

If your organisation is missing from the map or you have plans to support the community and offer a warm space, please let us know by completing the Warm Spaces survey.


Health and wellbeing

Check in on your neighbours

If you are aware of a neighbour, friend, or relative who is over 65 or has a long-term condition and may find it difficult to get out, check that they are warm, well and their medicine cabinet and food supplies are stocked up. Having some company may also reduce social isolation.

Stay well

It’s important to take care of ourselves all year round, but the cold weather can make this difficult. Here are some tips to make it a little easier:

  • Moving around and keeping active will help you to stay warm and fit. Whether you go for a walk, or take part in an activity, it’s good to keep moving
  • Eat well and stay hydrated. It can sometimes be difficult to keep up the motivation to prepare meals in winter, but our diet, including how much we eat, is an important part of staying healthy and well
  • During autumn and winter, the risk of falling increases. Follow advice from Age.UK to reduce your risk of a fall
  • Pharmacists provide good health advice on a range of minor ailments, if you need to see a GP, tips on keeping a well-stocked medicine cabinet, and information about getting your flu jabs, for example, if you are entitled to a free NHS flu jab
  • The Covid Booster Programme opened in autumn and is still available in North East Lincolnshire. Please check if you are eligible
  • For urgent healthcare needs, the NHS 111 service is a free number to call or access at NHS 111 online, and will direct you to the right local service

Low mood, stress, and worry

Winter can be a hard time for some people. Cold weather and dark nights can leave people feeling isolated, and the run up to Christmas can be overwhelming. Managing these feelings can feel impossible, but there are small steps we can take to make a difference to our mental health.

The five ways to wellbeing

  • Connect – Talk and listen, be there, feel connected
  • Be active – Do what you can, enjoy what you do, move your mood
  • Take notice – Remember the simple things that give you joy
  • Keep learning – Embrace new experiences, see opportunities, surprise yourself
  • Give – Your time, your words, your presence

More about the five ways to wellbeing can be found on Mind – 5 ways to wellbeing and NHS Choices – 5 ways to wellbeing.

There are a range of support services in North East Lincolnshire available all year round, to help you manage your mental health and emotional wellbeing. Find a service that’s suitable for you:

Mental Health service information
ServiceContact details
Wellbeing serviceGroup sessions, phone calls or 1-2-1 support. Go to LiveWell or call 01472 325500.
Families First Information Service A free information service for families with children aged 0-19 years. Visit FIS, call our helpline on 01472 326292 (option 1) or email [email protected].
ConnectNELA free, 24/7 telephone or online service to help you find the local services you need. Call 01472 403403 or go to ConnectNEL.
Priority Service RegisterA free support service that makes sure extra help is available to people in vulnerable situations. Find out more at Priority Services Register | Ofgem.

Help with money

You may be able to get help from our Home Energy Team if you:

  • live in a cold home or are struggling to heat your home
  • are on a low income
  • have inadequate heating and insulation in your property
  • need advice about switching gas are an older or vulnerable person, have a long-term physical or mental health condition or a child under five
  • live in a rented home and your landlord has failed to make repairs
  • live in a shared house and want information on the responsibilities and duties of landlords

Visit the Home energy page or call 01472 326296 Option 5 or visit www.nelincs.gov.uk/homes-and-property/lincs-4-warmer-homes/

The Government’s Energy Bills Support Scheme Alternative Funding (EBSS AF) is providing support of £400 for energy bills for households in England, Scotland, and Wales without a direct relationship to a domestic electricity supplier. Check eligibility and apply here.

Anglian Water offer up to 50% reduction on water bills for those who are eligible. Visit Anglian Water’s Extra Care Support for more information.

The Help for Household fund supports with costs for energy, food and emergency household expenses through vouchers, goods, and grants. For more information visit: Help for Households.

You may get Cold Weather Payments if you’re getting certain benefits or Support for Mortgage Interest. If you’re eligible, you’ll get these payments automatically. For more information, visit GOV.UK – Cold Weather Payment.

You could get £150 off your electricity bill for Winter 2023 to 2024 under the Warm Home Discount Scheme. You’ll usually get the statement automatically if you’re eligible. Find out more at GOV.UK – Warm Home Discount Scheme.  

Big Community Switch is a free scheme that could help you save money on your energy bills.

It’s easy and there is no obligation to accept the offer. All you need to provide are your contact details, the name of your energy supplier and details of your current energy usage and tariff. All you need to do to be involved is Sign up to the Big Community Switch.

Register up until December 9th 2023.

Better Housing, Better Health is a charity working to improve your domestic warmth and well-being. Their free helpline provides a single point of contact for services, advice and financial support to improve the energy efficiency of your property. Get in touch at 0800 107 004 to see if you’re eligible for financial support schemes and start the process. The team also offers free home energy visits to install free, small energy-saving measures in your home.


Things to do

Holiday Activities and Food Programme

The Holiday Activities and Food (HAF) Programme provides holiday activities in North East Lincolnshire to those families that are eligible for benefit-related Free School Meals.


Stay safe

Rough sleepers

If you need support, please get in touch with the homeless prevention team on 01472 326296 option 1.

As the weather gets colder, the risk to rough sleepers increases. Help people off the streets and into accommodation this winter by downloading StreetLink. StreetLink offers an easy way for the public to let the council know about people who are rough sleeping, by asking for information about the individual and where you saw them.

The StreetLink app can be downloaded by visiting your usual app store, or to find more information visit StreetLink – Connecting people sleeping rough to local services (thestreetlink.org.uk)  

Domestic Abuse

If you are concerned about the safety of yourself or someone else, please ring 999 and ask for the police. If you are unable to speak, when the operator is on the line, press 55 on the keypad. For non-emergency incidents, contact Humberside Police on 101. Alternatively, you can find local services and report an incident online at Advice about domestic abuse | Humberside Police.

Crime prevention

Make your home more secure by following these simple tips:

  • Lock all doors and windows, and ensure any PVCu doors are locked properly by lifting the handle and using the key to double-lock them
  • Keep keys and valuables secure and out of sight
  • Consider installing a doorbell camera, internal camera and burglar alarm
  • Install ‘dusk to dawn’ external lighting and use timer switches in your home to control internal lights, radios and a simulated TV
  • Ensure boundary fences are secure with side gates locked. Keep tools and ladders in a locked shed
  • Secure bins at night and put garden furniture away for the winter as these can be used by burglars as climbing aids to gain access to upper floor windows
  • Ensure your vehicle is locked and remove all valuables as burglars often check to see if doors are left unlocked