Britons keep their homes at least 4C warmer than in the 1970s, as people no longer accept “the need to wear thick clothes at home in winter”, a government-commissioned study has found.
Despite the typical household seeing their bills rise by £200 in real terms, many of us are choosing to heat our homes at 17.7C in winter, compared with 13.7C in 1970.
The report said people in 1970 had “very different expectations of thermal comfort”.
“Most families in 1970 lived in homes that would be cold by modern standards in winter – as cool as 12C on average.
“There may have been ice on the insides of the windows, and nearly everyone accepted the need to wear thick clothes at home in winter,” it said.
Despite the increased temperatures, the average household now uses 18 per cent less energy, “largely due to the dramatic improvements in the efficiency of space and water heating”.
In 1970 “most of the energy was lost up chimneys”, it said.
Just disgraceful, isn’t it?
And given that what actually appears in GDP is the fuel bill almost none of that increase in the standard of living is reflected in the official figures.