A BARNSLEY MP says more should be done to support the elderly during cold weather.

Dan Jarvis said more than 20,000 local households are classed as 'fuel poor' with older people making up half the number.

He said: “It is just plain wrong that elderly people are suffering, simply because they cannot keep themselves warm.

"It is completely unacceptable that we have allowed this social injustice to perpetuate for so long."

Studies have found that cold weather and under-heated homes also lead to numerous problems affecting older people, such as increasing the number of falls and exacerbating conditions like arthritis.

He added: "We should all be looking out for one another and supporting the elderly in our communities. In Barnsley we have a fine and long-standing tradition of looking out for our neighbours – we are by our very nature, community-minded people.

“Whether that means helping out with the shopping, changing that hard-to-reach light-bulb or simply providing some company each week, there is something that as individuals, we can all be doing to help make a positive contribution and maybe even save a life.”