Behind the Brylcreem and banter lurks a serious bloke. Last month, Quentin Willson of the FairFuel UK campaign met with Chief Secretary to the Treasury, Danny Alexander MP, to discuss the impact of fuel duty on the economy.
Over the past six years, the price of petrol/diesel in the UK has risen by 60% and there is another price rise due in January 2013. Although the planned increase of 3p per litre doesn’t sound too bad compared to pump prices of £1.30 to £1.40 (current average!) it sounds a lot worse when you realise that equates to an increase of 16 pence per gallon. A more relevant figure since most of us still work with ‘mpg’ figures.
Anyway, to put these figures in perspective, nearly 60% of fuel cost is tax.
And it’s not just the personal costs of our own private fuel, every penny added to fuel duty adds £500 per year to the cost of running a truck. So why should that bother us?
Inevitably these price rises are passed on which means dearer bread and beans, coats and shoes, bricks and cement, plus everything else that is carried on the back of a truck or inside a van.
If Britain is to get out of this economic mess we need a bit of help. More carrot and less stick. Fuel tax is not just a tax on transport it is an additional tax on business, welfare and life. It also affects bus and train fares and ambulance and fire engine running costs. There is no escape, unless we get on our bikes.
So far, nearly 350,000 people have signed up to the FairFuel UK campaign on their website which is full of fascinating facts and their latest actions to lobby Government ministers.
There is also a section designed to help you support their campaign by contacting your local MP directly. And if you don’t know who your MP is, it even tells you!