The cost of heating their homes, rising rents, and putting food on their table are the biggest cost of living challenges facing people in Eastbourne.

Members of the Eastbourne Foodbank team were in the town centre on Wednesday (28 February) to gather more information about how people are being impacted by higher energy bills, rising rent bills, and inflation.

The results from the survey will help the foodbank’s campaigns team focus on the issues that matter most in town.

Juliet Mead, Eastbourne Foodbank’s campaigns manager said: “We’re really grateful to everyone who stopped and told us about their experiences. Talking to people and hearing their stories helps us enormously to understand what is going on in our community.”

The foodbank team asked each shopper to post a sticker on a board of cost of living challenges next to the issue that was affecting them most. Each person was asked to identify only the biggest challenge they have, not all of them.

The result was the cost of gas and electricity was the main concern, followed by rising cost of rents and mortgages, and then the cost of food. Of 109 shoppers 35 (32%) said the cost of heating and power was their biggest challenge while 23 (21%) were most concerned about increases in their rent or mortgage. For 22 people (20%) the rising cost of food topped the list of concerns.

Juliet added: “Of course for many people the real challenge financially is the combination of all of these things – and that’s what many people told us. The more your rent goes up the less income you have to heat your home, buy food, or spend on other essentials.”

If you would like to hear more about our work in the community, including future market stalls and events, email with your full name and the words ‘sign me up’. We will add you to our mailing list.