Supporting you through the rising cost of living

Council tax, benefits and financial support

A range of advice, guidance and contact details to ensure you know where to get the support you may need during the current cost of living crisis.

Household Support Fund 2023/24 - update

Details of the Household Support Fund for 2023/2024 have been released and we have received details of the council's allocation and the grant conditions. We are currently reviewing how to meet these new grant conditions in order to ensure we are supporting people in the county that are facing challenges with the impact of the cost-of-living increases. Previous allocations may not be replicated but we haven't finalised all the details and arrangements yet, but when we have we will share all the relevant information and update this page.

Council tax


  • GOV.UK - Universal Credit - monthly payment to help with your living costs if you are of working age. If you don't have enough to live on while you wait for your first payment (or first payment after notifying of a change in circumstances) you may be able to get an advance of your first Universal Credit payment.
  • Housing benefit - If you are on a low income, even if you are working, you may be able to get help with your rental costs.

Financial support

  • GOV.UK: Help for Households - information on the cost-of-living support from the government that you could be eligible for
  • Energy Bills Support Scheme (EBSS AF) and Alternative Fuels Payment (AFP) - information about the Government's Energy Bills Support Scheme (EBSS AF) and Alternative Fuels Payment (AFP), providing energy bills support to those who haven't received automatic financial assistance from any energy support schemes
  • GOV.UK: Cost of living support - find out what support is available to help with the cost of living. This includes income and disability benefits, bills and allowances, childcare, housing and travel.
  • Household Support Fund - information about the Winter 2022/23 Household Support Fund which will help ensure as many people as possible have all the essentials they need. 
  • Money navigator tool - Money Helper UK provides guidance based upon individual circumstances and help find support in your area.
  • I'm worried about debt - support if you are struggling with debt
  • Help in a crisis - local welfare provision providing support to people in crisis
  • Healthy Start (NHS): How to apply - Get help to buy food and milk. The Healthy Start pre-paid card can be used to spend on healthy foods and to receive free vitamins for those who are pregnant and children under the age of four.
  • Early Years funding for 3 and 4 year olds - entitlement is for all children aged up to three and four for up to 15 hours free childcare per week. Or 570 hours per annum, 38 weeks of the year
  • 30 hours childcare offer for eligible families to extend their three and four year old funding up to 30 hours per week.
  • Early years pupil premium - for early years providers delivering the funded hours to eligible three and four year olds. The payment goes to the setting to support your child.
  • Scope disability energy support - free energy and water advice to disabled people, helping  to manage energy and water needs

Free sims and mobile data from Wiltshire libraries

Wiltshire Libraries are working with the Good Things Foundation to distribute free SIMs and mobile data to people in need. The National Databank scheme is supported by UK mobile networks including Vodafone, O2 and Three.

The free SIMs and mobile data are available from Chippenham, Devizes, Salisbury, Trowbridge and Warminster libraries.

To be able to access the National Databank you must be 18+ years old and from a low-income household. One or more of the following must also be true:

  • You have no or poor access to the internet at home.
  • You have no or poor access to the internet away from home.
  • You can't afford your existing monthly contract or top-up.

If you meet the criteria, contact Chippenham, Devizes, Salisbury, Trowbridge or Warminster libraries to find out more and to book an appointment.