Rising energy bills among top priorities for new Prime Minister Liz Truss, say people in the South

Liz Truss will have to address a number of pressing issues after being appointed Britain's next prime minister. Credit: PA

The cost-of-living crisis and rising energy bills are what people in the South say are their top priorities for the new Prime Minister to tackle.

Current Foreign Secretary Liz Truss was today announced as the new Prime Minister after winning 57% of the votes against Rishi Sunak.

She will replace Boris Johnson as the next PM on Tuesday, when she meets the Queen for the formal handover of power.

ITV Meridian has been out in Ramsgate in Kent and Abingdon in Oxfordshire to find out what people's top priorities are for the new Prime Minister to deal with.

One woman in Ramsgate told ITV Meridian the top priority should be reducing the cost of heating and fuel.

"The heating for everybody - not just those who are poor" she said. "There's a lot of people like my son and his wife who both work, have a family and a mortgage, and they're struggling."

Another woman added: "Me and my partner can't work because we are both on disability and the payment is so low we are struggling to afford anything. Trying to keep us fed, and our animals fed, it's a nightmare."

Shoppers in Ramsagte say the cost of living crisis is the main issue they want Liz Truss to tackle.

One Ramsgate resident said shops in the town could be forced to close if energy bills aren't reduced.

"How can they charge a 2-300% increase in energy?

"You can't justify it. It's a mess."

One market trader in Abingdon said his priority is his energy bill.

"Mine is going to double, and it's got to come from somewhere. It's not like my wages will double overnight.

"I can cope but there should be a package of help for the elderly.

"A lot of people are going to struggle even more, especially those who don't work full time."

Another resident described being 'worried to death' about the energy crisis. "All the little businesses that could go, because of the high bills they have to pay, she said.

"How are we going to pay them? We just hope the new prime minister sticks to her promises and can help us all out."

Another Abingdon resident believes going back to the original freeze on the energy cap would be the best way to help people.

"It needs doing and would definitely help" she said.

"People need more support than has been announced towards their cost of energy.

"Also the added worry of workers' rights, and how the unions are being treated at the moment."