Winter weather is now upon us… so it’s vital that we all keep an eye on older friends, neighbours and relatives as the cold snap starts to tighten its grip.

Nottingham City Council is asking for people to check on those they think could be at risk, even just to see if they need essentials from the shops. They could be in serious need of help, but you won’t know until you check.

In Nottingham nearly 12 percent of the population are over 65 and those people who may be frail, or who have existing health conditions, are particularly at risk.

The City Council is asking for people to check on those they think could be at risk, even just to see if they need essentials from the shops. They could be in serious need of help, but you won’t know until you check.

We’re asking everyone to remember the needs of friends, relatives and neighbours who could be at risk. Just a small gesture like offering a helping hand or even being a friendly face to neighbours who may be in need can go a long way. A small act of kindness can make a real difference to someone’s life.

Perhaps just popping in for five minutes for a friendly chat can help. Your neighbour may welcome some company but didn’t want to bother anyone. By helping them to keep warm, picking up essentials like food or medicine to prevent them going out unnecessarily, or making sure they can safely get in and out of their home in icy conditions, you could really make a difference.

Here are 10 tips to help yourself and others stay warm and well this winter:

Heating your home

As a general guide, living rooms need to be around 21 degrees C, and bedrooms around 18 degrees C. It’s a good idea to check heating systems are working properly before the cold weather sets in.

Look for financial help

Make sure you are receiving all the financial support you are entitled to, which will help towards heating bills.

Insulating your home

Loft insulation can save up to £180 and cavity wall insulation can save up to £140 a year on your bills. Grants are available from utility companies. Call your gas or electricity company.

Keep moving

It’s important to keep moving, even if you’re housebound. People who have difficulty walking can also exercise in a chair.

Wrap up

Make sure you or the people you look after wrap up before going out in bad weather. Several layers are better than one thick layer.

Flu Jab

It’s important for everyone in an ‘at risk’ group to get a flu jab – this could mean you as well as the people you look after. Check with your doctor if you need more information.

Eat for heat

Eat for warmth, regular hot meals and drinks provide both warmth and energy.

Keep an eye on the weather

Make sure you check the weather forecast regularly.

Be prepared

It’s a good idea to keep a range of basic food, including vegetables, in the freezer and cupboards – and don’t forget to stock up on pet food!

Keep a couple of bottles of clean water in storage in case of frozen pipes. Ensure you have a good supply of all the medication you take each day plus basic cough and cold remedies. Keep a snow shovel, rock salt, torch, spare batteries and a first aid kit handy.

Keep in contact

Look out for friends, family relatives or neighbours who may be more vulnerable to the cold, especially if they have long-term medical conditions.

Get the help and support you need from your Gas, Electricity or Water Supplier

What is a Priority Services Register?

A Priority Services Register is a free scheme offered your gas, electricity and water suppliers. Once you register you can receive additional support and special services from your each of your suppliers. It’s the extra help you need. Registering ensures your supplier tailors their services to meet your needs, for example by providing you with extra help in using your meter. Many of the services offered are free.

Who can join the free Priority Services Registers?

You can be added to a Priority Service Register if you are: of pensionable age; disabled; chronically sick; blind or partially sighted; deaf or hearing impaired.

If your supplier knows you have health issues or essential medical equipment in your home you will be prioritised in the event of a break to your supply.

To find out more about the services on offer to you and to register yourself follow the link –