Help is at hand in Sidmouth for anyone who has difficulty using the internet to access essential services.

Citizens Advice East Devon is offering free face-to-face advice and assistance at its weekly drop-in sessions in the town centre.

The Sidmouth outreach team can also help with problems relating to debt, benefits and tax credits, utility bills and housing issues. If the query is complex or needs expert advice, the team will refer the client to a specialist within Citizens Advice or a trustworthy and competent outside organisation.

Chris Kraus from the team said: “Covid resulted in a significant shift towards remote support for our clients as our offices were closed.  Since September 2022 we have been increasing our face-to-face capacity; opening new offices in Honiton as well as relaunching and extending our outreach programme.  The main driver for this is the significant number of residents who are becoming ‘digitally excluded’ as they lack the skills and confidence to cope with essential things moving online.  We offer guidance and support, appropriate for the client's needs, to help them overcome these challenges.”

The team had been running their sessions in Sidmouth Library, but moved to Sidmouth Hospice at Home’s Information and Support Centre at 48, High Street in October. The drop-in sessions are every Tuesday from 9.30am until 11.30am.