Cost of living protests take place in Manchester, Liverpool and Lancaster

Hundreds gather at the Cost of Living protests Credit: PA

Hundreds of people have joined cost of living protests across the North West today.

Demonstrations have been taking place in Manchester, Liverpool, and Lancaster, in response to the rise in energy bills- which will cost families up to £700 more a year.

Protestors there today said they want the government to come up with a 'proper plan' to support people through crisis. 

Ian Allinson from Manchester TUC, said: “We can’t go on like this. The government can find money when it wants, wasting billions on useless PPE and writing off loans. If we stand together we can prevent the government, employers and landlords from driving more people into poverty.”

Protesters gather at Liverpool's Bombed Out Church to demonstrate against the rising cost of living Credit: @Mark_Sw1ft

The protests have been organised by social organisation The People's Assembly - taking place across the UK. It's been sparked by energy regulator Ofgem's announcement that the energy price cap will rise by 54% from the 1 April this year.

They blame the current government for the cost of living crisis and their handling of it.

In response to the energy crisis, the Chancellor of the exchequer, Rishi Sunak, has implemented a one-off repayable £200 discount and a rebate on council tax bills. It's a part of his £9bn package which aims to help those struggling with the essentially £700 increase in household energy bills from April.

Speaking to the House of Commons on 3rd February 2020, Rishi Sunak said: "The price cap has meant that the impact of soaring gas prices has so far fallen mainly on energy companies. So much so, that some suppliers who couldn’t afford to meet those extra costs have gone out of business as a result. It is not sustainable to keep holding the price of energy artificially low."

Rishi Sunak also called the Government's £200 discount 'just one part' of their plan to tackle the country's 'most pressing economic challenges.'

> The energy price cap is rising - here's what that means for you