Council leaders have agreed to work together to provide public warm places for people who struggle to heat their homes this winter.

Cotswold District Council declared a cost of living emergency in July this year as one in five local children are in poverty.

Civic leaders are extremely worried about the impact further price rises will have on already struggling families.

Conservative councillors put forward plans last night to help people who are struggling to heat their homes during the day.

They are suggesting that parish halls, church rooms and other community buildings such as libraries, leisure centres and museums and district council offices could be used.

However, how the problem is tackled will be explored by a special working group set up specifically for the cost of living crisis.

The issue will also be referred to council leaders as any decision could have financial implications.

Councillor Gina Blomefield told the council meeting her motion was extremely important as the most vulnerable people in the Cotswolds are fearful of the winter.

“Wringing our hands and calling for more Government aid does not of itself solve the problem.

“I would urge Cotswold District Council to galvanise its own resources to support and assist local communities, charities and faith organisations to provide places where people who cannot heat their homes can come in the knowledge they will be welcomed and cared for.”

She said they could also be given information about extra financial support and help with insulating their homes better.

Cllr Blomefield also said the council should apply for all available grants and that the cost of living working group is established soon to set up warm places across the district before it gets any colder.

Chairman Dilys Neill said the decision will now go to cabinet and thanked Cllr Blomefield for bringing the issue to the council’s attention.