CAB to open new digital unit for benefit claims

Diane Gradwell, chief executive of Citizens Advice Lancashire West
Diane Gradwell, chief executive of Citizens Advice Lancashire West

A major new initiative aimed at helping local people gain access to vital benefits and other services via the internet is being launched at Fleetwood Market this month.

It is to be run by the Citizens Advice Bureau and is supported by Wyre Council and Fleetwood Town Council.

Fleetwood Market

Fleetwood Market

The sessions will be held every Tuesday, Thursday and Friday from November 14.

Specially trained digital champions, armed with online workstations, will be on hand at the new Digital Help Centre in the mark, on Adelaide Street.

They will be able to guide people through a host of everyday functions such as benefit applications, Council Tax, utility bills and many others.

Diane Gradwell, chief executive of CAB West, said: “More and more essential services are only accessible online and many of them need the applicant to have an email address.

“But many people still don’t have access to the internet, especially in low income areas or those with more older people, and these are often the people who need these services the most.”

The refurbished location for the Digital Help Centre is being provided by Wyre Borough Council, while Fleetwood Town Council has contributed funding towards the IT equipment used. CAB’s Poulton Road premises will continue.