Demand on Citizens Advice in Eastbourne is highest in memory, says boss

The level of demand on Citizens Advice in Eastbourne is the highest the chief officer has seen in 21 years.

The branch’s chief officer Alan Bruzon, who joined the charity in 2002, said the service is receiving a lot of enquiries as the community deals with the cost of living crisis.

Mr Bruzon explained that most enquiries are about disability benefits, debt enquiries and energy payments. Although the charity is also helping a lot of people with housing issues including rent increases.

He said: “What we notice is waiting times or our appointments getting booked up for longer and longer and there comes a stopping point where we cannot help any more people.

“It is a concern that has been going on for most of this year, since January. That is when we noticed an increase in advice.”

Mr Bruzon added: “This is a time where people feel more desperate than before, than I have ever seen really.”

The chief officer explained that the Eastbourne branch of the charity is able to help with around 80 per cent of the enquiries it receives – which also includes referring residents to other specialist agencies.

Mr Bruzon said: “Our team is doing a brilliant job and doing really well with the increased pressure that is affecting them at the moment.

“It can be really difficult to find solutions. We are doing a lot of work with wellbeing to completely support the community.”

He added: “We have got ourselves through the pandemic and difficulties and that is what we are here for. We are here to help people get through the difficulties and we will do our best to help people get through this, to the other side.”

If you would like to volunteer with the Eastbourne charity please visit its website.

The branch’s chief officer said: “We are always interested in looking at new volunteers and that is always welcomed. We have a great team and we are looking for more [volunteers] so if anyone is interested they should get in touch.”

For Citizen Advice’s general advice freephone dial 0800 144 8848, for its consumer helpline dial 0808 223 1133, and to reach the Universal Credit Help to Claim line dial 0800 144 8 444.

The charity can also be contacted via its website –

Basic advice and information is available at

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