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VIDEO: Council offers 'bailout loans' to thwart payday companies

A council in Kent is thought to be the first in the country to offer bailout loans to private tenants who can't pay their rent. Ashford Council says it had to act after seeing a 20 per cent rise in evictions.

The loans are aimed at stopping people turning to payday loan companies. The move should also reduce the number needing to be housed by the council in expensive bed and breakfast accommodation. Earlier we spoke to Cllr Aline Hicks and asked her why we're seeing such an increase in evictions?

Benefit fraud mum sentenced to unpaid work

A Reading mum-of-two has admitted to benefit fraud and has been sentenced to 160 hours unpaid work.

Katherine Harkin, who is 24-years-old, falsely claimed £24,285 in income support, housing benefit and council tax benefits for almost 5 years.

The mum from Skye Close, Calcot, was also ordered to pay £250 legal costs during the hearing at Reading Magistrates' Court.

When the original financial claims were made, Mrs Harkin said she was a single parent with no income.

However, the government's work and pension department and Reading Borough Council found she had been living with her husband for some time.

Mrs Harkin said she became ill in 2010 and her husband had stayed to look after the children, but this became a permanent arrangement.

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