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I’m a gardening expert – here’s how growing your own herbs can help you cut your energy bill


AS household bills rocket, more and more Brits are resorting to desperate cost-cutting measures.

The Chancellor announced every household in Britain would get a £400 energy bill discount to help with the cost of living crisis.

Jekka McViar recommends using herbs to flavour food - cooking them all in one pot to save energy

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Jekka McViar recommends using herbs to flavour food – cooking them all in one pot to save energyCredit: Alamy

But as bills get set to rocket to an eye-watering £2,800 a year from £1,971 – the extra help won’t be enough for many.

One gardening expert has recommended using herbs to ease financial pressures – taking inspiration from wartime grandparents.

Jekka McVicar, a designer and vice president of the Royal Horticultural Society, remembers how her gran wrote cookbooks in the 1940s and 50s, teaching people how to make tasty food with rations.

She told The Telegraph: “If we go back to one-pot cooking, to save electricity, and to save heating and everything else, then herbs will come even more into their own.

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“If you add some bay leaf, and some rosemary, and some thyme into stewed veg or stewed meat, it makes everything flavoursome, it makes it more digestible.

“Today’s society expects a huge range of food on tap, and I think we’ve got to re-educate our palate and our cooking skills to cope with less variety.”

Gardener William Murray, added: “If you’ve got a small space you can definitely grow some herbs, and then you’re not spending money on them and also not buying things in plastic.”

Rishi Sunak’s discount £400 bill discount will be dished out to households from October and payments will be paid in instalments over the successive six months.

It will replace current plans for a £200 energy rebate, which households were told they would have to pay back over five years.

Under original plans, the discount was to be dished out to households in October, with repayments automatically repaid from people’s bills in £40 instalments from April next year.

Now every household will get a £400 grant which you won’t have to pay back through higher energy bills in later years.

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