'Salaries can't keep up': Shropshire residents fret amid cost of living crisis

Rising food bills, increasing electric and gas costs, and a major jump in the price of fuel are all issues worrying county residents.

Eliz Chausheva from Wellington with her one-year-old twins Ilayda and Dilyara
Eliz Chausheva from Wellington with her one-year-old twins Ilayda and Dilyara

The cost of living crisis is becoming very real for people across all walks of life, with evidence at the till every time they fill up the car, do the weekly shop, or top up their electricity.

Residents in Wellington, Telford, said it was impossible not to notice the difference, and they raised concerns about the prospect of worse to come.

Tina Yordonova with her son Daniel

Tina Yordanova, a 38-year-old married mother of three, said her family was having to cope with a significant jump in their electricity bills, along with more expensive visits to the supermarket.

Mrs Yordanova, a bank worker who is currently on maternity leave after her son Daniel was born a month ago, said their energy bills were up from £125-£130 a month to £200.

She said: "It is worrying, everything is rising and salaries cannot keep up. It is especially worrying being on maternity leave with a brand new baby.

"I don't think you will meet people who are not worried about it."

She added: "With electricity you can literally see it.

"Before we used to pay £125-£130 a month for electricity and gas, now all of a sudden it is up to £200 a month. That was the first thing and you can see it going up."

Mrs Yordanova said she expected the situation to get worse before it gets better, with the Russian invasion of Ukraine playing a significant factor in price rises.

She said: "I think it will go up more. Especially with the ongoing issues between Russia and Ukraine, I think electricity will continue to go up.

"Because of the products and shops, they have to keep up on the prices. If their expenses are going up everything has to go up."

Karl Thomas, a 33-year-old industrial worker, said: "I have noticed the impact. Just putting the washing on for 30 minutes you can tell the difference at how quick it goes down on that.

"We use top up cards and I am doing it twice a week now, not once."

Mr Thomas said he was now working two extra Saturdays a month to help meet the costs.

Eliz Chausheva, a 34 year old mother of three from Wellington, said her partner is working two jobs to deal with the current costs, and added: "It seems like it is getting more and more expensive and the wages are staying the same."

She added: "Everything is so much more expensive now, even comparing gas and electricity – it used to be about £40 and now it is £100.

"Even with the shopping to be honest you don't buy the same stuff you used to for the same amount of money."

Stephen Davies, from Newport

Stephen Davies, 58 from Newport, said the current situation does play on his mind, adding: "You notice the difference when you get to the till."

He said that he had found himself making adjustments, but that the majority of cost rises could not be avoided.

He said: "There are little things, remembering to switch everything off, lights in rooms you're not using. You make sure the TV is not kept on standby, there's not much else you can do."

Dave Busby, one of the owners of the Gratitude Cafe, with his son Solomon

David Busby, a musician from Ironbridge who is the co-owner of Wellington's Gratitude Cafe, said the increased cost of fuel had been significant – but unavoidable for a profession that relies on travel for gigs.

The 42-year-old said: "When I first had my car it was £50 to fill up and it was £84 when I filled it up the other week, but you can't avoid it."

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