BRITISH pensioners living on the Costa del Sol who had their Winter Fuel Payment stopped by the UK government will be furious to hear that the methodology used by the Department of Work and Pensions was fundamentally flawed.
The DWP previously attempted to deflect anger over the drastic measures, which affected upwards of 100,000 British expats across the continent, by claiming that it was “overly complex” and “prohibitively expensive” to base the threshold on more advanced temperature data than simple national averages.
It has now emerged that the DWP did in fact have access to data which would have radically changed how they defined who is entitled to the allowance which, at up to £300 (€350), can make an enormous difference over a long winter.
The bizarre system currently in place measures the average temperature of the country in which claimants live, leading to outrageous outcomes. Spain is deemed too hot on the grounds that the average winter temperature is 5.6 degrees warmer than Britain’s warmest region, neglecting the fact that housing is simply not designed for the cold.
Meanwhile average temperatures in France include exotic Caribbean and African territories, leaving British pensioners living in the Alps in the absurd position of being considered in a place too hot for help.