Big rise in unpaid council tax as arrears near £8 million across Bedford

Council tax arrears
Council tax arrears

New figures have revealed residents in Bedford owe nearly £8 million in unpaid council tax, an average of £112 per household.

Council tax arrears have reached £7,829,000 according to a new report by National Debtline – the free advice service run by the Money Advice Trust – up by £656,000 from 2013/14.

However, it is by some way the lowest owed in terms of unpaid council tax in Bedfordshire behind Central Beds and Luton.

Joanna Elson OBE, chief executive of the Money Advice Trust, said: “We are seeing more and more people seek help with Council Tax arrears – but the fact that Bedford residents owe nearly £5 million makes us concerned that many more people in the area are struggling alone.

“Free debt advice services such as National Debtline are here to help. We would like to see local authorities do everything they can to help residents who are falling behind to seek the free advice that can turn their lives around.

“We know that the earlier a problem is caught, the better the outcome.

“I would urge anyone in Bedford who is struggling to make their Council Tax payments to contact National Debtline as soon as possible. Our expert advisers are on hand to work through your situation and help you get back on track with your finances.”

National Debtline offers free, independent and confidential advice 24 hours a day online at www.nationaldebtline.org and on 0808 808 4000, Monday to Friday 9am to 9pm, Saturday 9.30am to 1pm.

The Money Advice Trust is a charity which helps people across the UK tackle their debts and manage their money wisely.