RESIDENTS of a borough facing financial hardship because of the cost of living crisis are being asked to apply for grants from a new allocation of government cash.

The government has announced the Household Support Scheme will be extended to help with the latest round of price rises.

Blackburn with Darwen Council is now seeking applications from those who need help to pay for food, energy and water bills, and other essential items.

It is aimed at families with children and other vulnerable people who may or may not meet the threshold for benefits.

Funding is available for Blackburn with Darwen children, families and vulnerable adults including single claimants with an annual household income below £21,152 and couples with an annual household income below £31,731.

Applicants must also meet at least one of the following additional criteria: being a recipient of income related benefits; facing financial hardship; diagnosed with a severe mental health disorder; diagnosed with a long-term medical condition related to diabetes' respiratory or cardiovascular diseases; or diagnosed with long Covid.

Cllr Vicky McGurk, Blackburn with Darwen's finance boss, said: "We are pleased to be able to extend the Household Support Scheme and be able to carry on helping our residents in this way over the spring and summer.

"People are struggling with the rising cost of living, with energy prices going up and food and fuel prices rising. We want to be able to give as much support as we can to help people and the Household Support Scheme is a big part of this.

"If you are struggling then please do take a look at the scheme and the eligibility criteria to see if you could receive help.”