Motorists in parts of rural Northumberland will get cheaper fuel from today.
People living in the NE48 postcode area, which includes Kielder, Bellingham and Wark, will benefit from a five pence per litre cut in the price of unleaded and diesel.
The Government’s Rural Fuel Rebate scheme will allow 125,000 people living in 17 of the UK’s most rural communities, who currently face some of the highest fuel prices in the country despite depending on cars for transport, to benefit from cheaper fuel.
This follows a year-long EU approvals process. While the UK’s most rural islands already receive this discount, this is the first time that the EU has approved this fuel discount anywhere in mainland Europe.
Damian Hinds, Exchequer Secretary to the Treasury, said: “People living in some of the UK’s most rural areas will now benefit from a 5p per litre fuel discount thanks to the Rural Fuel Rebate, which effectively comes into force today.
“Fuel is often more expensive in very rural areas, even though cars are more of a necessity. However, people in 17 areas ranging from the Highlands to Devon will now be able to buy cheaper fuel, making travelling to work and school far easier.”
Parts of Cumbria, North Yorkshire and Devon are the only other mainland rural areas in England to benefit. The rest are in Scotland.
Fuel retailers in selected areas could register from April 1, and the scheme will begin to effect consumers today following a 60-day time lag.
Retailers within these geographical areas are eligible to register with HMRC and to claim back five pence per litre duty relief on purchases of unleaded petrol and diesel for retail sale within the eligible areas. They are entitled to claim the relief from HMRC on a monthly basis.