An Alton-based charity has lifted the lid on the struggles of many households to cover essential bills.

It comes after a national report by charity Christians Against Poverty (CAP) confirmed the cost of living crisis is far from over for those on low incomes.

The Pushed under, pushed out report has sounded the alarm about the growing number of UK households who are being pulled into debt.

CAP, which has partnered with Harvest Church in Alton for ten years, offers a range of free support services including debt advice and a job club.

The charity’s Alton Debt Centre manager, Steve Hannington said: “This new report shows what we are already seeing on the ground here in Alton and the surrounding area, that many households we visit just don't have enough income to cover their essential costs right now. 

“The Pushed under, pushed out report has looked at 10 years’ worth of data and shows four out of five people with income below the minimum level were in arrears due to increasing household bills.

“The report also found those in low income jobs were often most affected and that employment doesn’t necessarily protect against the impact of low incomes and debt.”

Mr Hannington added the main reason for debt is living on a low income, compounded by other factors such as redundancy, relationship breakdown, injury or long-term illness, or the death of loved one.

“These types of often unexpected or unplanned situations can cause both emotional and financial suffering,” he added.

CAP’s local team in Alton is encouraging businesses, organisations and community groups to put up CAP’s ‘Improve your finances’ poster to raise awareness of the free online and local help available.

To access CAP’s free support including a benefits checker see or CAP’s Alton Debt Centre manager, Steve Hannington, can be contacted on [email protected] or 07501 914563.