Partly Cloudy

Partly Cloudy

max temp: 19°C

min temp: 11°C

ESTD 1874 Search

West Suffolk: Debt centre is not seeing a lessening of demand

15:00 14 April 2014

Darren Bullen, manager of the West Suffolk branch of Christians Against Poverty (CAP).

Darren Bullen, manager of the West Suffolk branch of Christians Against Poverty (CAP).

The UK economy has turned a corner, but a debt centre in west Suffolk is still seeing a steady stream of clients.

shares

Last winter Darren Bullen, manager of the West Suffolk Centre run by debt charity Christians Against Poverty (CAP), spoke of how desperate the situation was for some clients, who have gone without food to pay for heating.

In the centre’s first two years it has seen 120 people.

Speaking last week, Mr Bullen said: “We have been fully booked all the way and I haven’t seen the numbers getting any better. And the people I’m seeing on a day-to-day basis, they are just showing how desperate it is.”

He added: “As far as I’m concerned I’m expecting numbers to steadily increase.”

He said each month they were seeing five new clients on top of their existing ones.

He spoke of one couple where the husband had lost his job and “before too long things started getting out of control”.

“Suddenly one salary is gone and you go over the edge very quickly. I really don’t see any decline in demand,” he said.

CAP helps clients by dealing with letters they receive about their debts and they are set a budget with a timescale of how long it looks likely to be until they are debt-free.

The charity launched its Don’t Wait campaign at the end of last year as millions of people in the UK are suffering from debt, but only a small proportion are actually seeking help.

Mr Bullen said: “We were quite overwhelmed when we opened the centre (in west Suffolk) how quickly we got people coming through because the statistics show you people do take maybe up to three years to actually pluck up that courage to do it, to make the choice.

“It is hard. It’s embarrassing. There’s a lot of humility needed to do it.”

He said in the two-and-a-half years the west Suffolk centre had been open 18 clients had gone debt-free which was “fantastic”.

He said for almost all clients insolvency was the only realistic route out of debt. He said some of his clients had estimated repayment periods of between 300 and 500 years.

He said research carried out by CAP showed people in East Anglia are finding it the hardest in England to deal with levels of problem personal debts. He said low levels of income and comparatively high levels of debt meant people in this region struggle the most to pay back what they owe.

For more information on CAP visit www.capuk.org or call 0800 328 0006.

shares

0 comments

Welcome , please leave your message below.

Optional - JPG files only
Optional - MP3 files only
Optional - 3GP, AVI, MOV, MPG or WMV files
Comments

Please log in to leave a comment and share your views with other East Anglian Daily Times visitors.

We enable people to post comments with the aim of encouraging open debate.

Only people who register and sign up to our terms and conditions can post comments. These terms and conditions explain our house rules and legal guidelines.

Comments are not edited by East Anglian Daily Times staff prior to publication but may be automatically filtered.

If you have a complaint about a comment please contact us by clicking on the Report This Comment button next to the comment.

Not a member yet?

Register to create your own unique East Anglian Daily Times account for free.

Signing up is free, quick and easy and offers you the chance to add comments, personalise the site with local information picked just for you, and more.

Sign up now

Suffolk County Council headquarters; Endeavour House, Ipswich.

How Suffolk schools are rated by local education chiefs is being kept secret – because they say releasing the information is “not in the public interest”.

A 24-year-old man has been arrested in connection with the stabbing of two people in Leiston earleir this year.

A fifth person has been arrested in connection with the stabbing of a man and a teenage boy in Leiston in April.

Kitchen fire is extinguished in Lowestoft.

Fire crews from Lowestoft have extinguished a kitchen blaze.

A sign of things to come? Not quite!

After Scottish and Welsh devolution, the government has turned its attention to how to transfer more powers to local people in England.

Robbie Warner

A day held in memory of a 19-year-old from Suffolk who died while at university has raised more than £5,000.

Catesby House in Sudbury

Residents of a west Suffolk market town take pride in telling visitors that it is the birthplace of the famous artist Thomas Gainsborough.

Jonathan Phipps needs a specialist lightweight all-terrain buggy that his parents can push him about in but there is no local statutory funding available for this £2,193 piece of equipment. Pictured here with mum Carol Phipps.

Fundraisers in Suffolk have stepped forward to help provide a specialist buggy so an eight-year-old disabled boy from near Bury St Edmunds can explore more of the world around him.

Saxmundham Station - which is due to get new information screens.

Rail operator Abellio is spending an extra £4 million to improve stations and trains across the region.

Great Waldingfield Primary School.

A number of measures have been implemented to curb parking problems around a growing west Suffolk primary school.

A care home in a west Suffolk village has been put in ‘special measures’ after being judged inadequate by healthcare inspectors.

Most read

Most commented

Topic pages