Woman allergic to the cold says £2,500 energy price cap bill isn’t enough to heat her home this winter

Sam Newland needs to keep her home at a constant 30 degrees in winter to manage her skin condition, known as cold urticaria

A woman with an allergy to the cold which means she needs to maintain a constant temperature in her home says the £2,500 energy bill cap is not enough.

Sam Newland, 50, has a condition called cold urticaria which causes her to develop painful rashes and welts on her skin when she gets cold.

She must maintain her body heat between 26 or 27 degrees otherwise her skin becomes irritated.

Ms Newland also suffers from fibromyalgia and onset rheumatoid arthritis, causing her symptoms to worsen in the cold.

Unfortunately, there is no cure for the condition and the same symptoms can also be triggered by sweat.

As a result, she has to keep her heating at a constant 30 degrees in winter to avoid suffering painful rashes, and she runs fans constantly around her home when the weather is warm.

Sam Newland has to keep her heating at a constant 30 degrees in winter to avoid painful rashes and welts on her skin (Photo: SWNS)

‘I need a 10k salary increase to afford rising energy prices’

The 50-year-old, a Personal Assistant from Stevenage, Herefordshire, said her electricity bills from So Energy used to be £48 per month, but have crept up and up amid the cost of living crisis.

She is worried she will be left at breaking point if extortionate prices force her to keep her heating off, adding that she and her husband Andy, 60, a print finisher, are still going to be struggling this winter, even after Liz Truss’s announcement to cap energy prices at £2,500 per year.

Ms Newland said: “It’s crazy, confusing, ridiculous and completely incomprehensible.

“We don’t have high flying jobs, we’re not on super salaries, we break even every month.

“We’re going to be paying over half of what we do now. I don’t know where everyone will get the money from.

”I would need a salary increase of 10k to be able to afford the rising prices.”

Her condition causes her to develop painful rashes and welts on her skin when she gets cold (Photo: Sam Newland / SWNS)

Ms Newland stressed that she does not have the option to simply put more layers of clothing on to keep herself warm, as the extra layers irritates her skin even further.

She added: “It doesn’t work just to put another layer on, what should I do walk around like an abominable snowman?”

‘I will be in dreadful pain’

Ms Newland said she worries for others who are in worse financial positions than herself, adding that her and her partner would have to move in with her dad if it gets to the point where she cannot afford to turn on the heating.

She said: “If I don’t have the heating on during winter I will be in dreadful pain.

“My welts will get bigger and more painful.”

Before the Prime Minister’s announcement on the new Energy Price Guarantee, her bills were set to rise to £300 per month, totalling £3,600 per year.

This will now be capped at around £208 a month for the next two years under the policy.

Her electricity bills from So Energy used to be £48 a month but recently crept up to £60 a month.

She added: “God forbid people who don’t have our salaries, it’s going to be hard enough for us.”

Energy bills frozen from October

Prime Minister Liz Truss has confirmed that households on the Ofgem energy price cap will have their bills frozen from October.

It means that a planned October price cap rise which was expected to see average annual energy bills hit £3,549 has been avoided.

The policy will limit the price that suppliers can charge customers for units of gas and will take account of temporarily removing green levies, worth around £150, from household bills.

Under the plans, a typical UK household will pay no more than £2,500 per year on their energy bill for the next two years, from 1 October.

The government has said a typical house will save £1,000 on average when the policy takes effect, while the typical flat will save £700.