"Last week, I launched my department’s new £500 million Household Support Fund, which will help vulnerable families and individuals with everyday costs. Over the last year, we have helped millions of people provide for their families through schemes like furlough and the temporary uplift in benefits. Many are now back on their feet but we know that some may still need further support. That is why our targeted Household Support Fund is here. To help those households with essential costs for food, clothing and utilities as we push through the last stages of our recovery from the pandemic. This fund bolsters support from the Warm Home Discount which provides a £140 rebate on energy bills each winter to over 2.2 million low-income households and the Cold Weather Payment which provides £25 extra a week for poorer households when the temperature is consistently below zero. By distributing the money through Local Authorities, this support will reach those most in need.
Before heading to Manchester for Conservative Party Conference, I was pleased to welcome Tourism Minister, Nigel Huddleston to Suffolk to show him some of the highlights of our successful visitor economy. Our tour took in Southwold Pier, Adnams Brewery, Snape Maltings and the new visitor tower at Sutton Hoo. Giving people a new perspective on the burial ground made increasingly famous by The Dig. Our hospitality and tourist industry is hugely important for jobs here in Suffolk and now that Covid restrictions have fallen away and large numbers of people holidayed in the UK this year, I’m delighted businesses will have had the opportunity to have a bumper summer and are in a good place as we edge towards autumn half term.
Finally, I was delighted to officially open the refurbished Saxmundham Station recently. Following a severe fire in 2018, the first floor of the building was condemned but the single storey upgrade now provides a much better experience for passengers – including seating, heating and power points."