Susanna Reid: Elsie was disappointed with Johnson's response to her situation

The 77-year-old GMB viewer reportedly takes buses throughout the day to stay warm
Susanna Reid: Elsie was disappointed with Johnson's response to her situation

By Ben Hatton, PA Political Staff

Susanna Reid has said 77-year-old Elsie was “disappointed” with Boris Johnson following his response to her situation in an interview with Good Morning Britain.

The British prime minister was challenged with Elsie’s case on the ITV show on Tuesday morning, and told the 77-year-old has seen her energy bill soar, forcing her to cut down to one meal a day and resort to travelling on buses throughout the day to stay out of her home and keep her bills down.

Former London mayor Mr Johnson said: “The 24-hour freedom bus pass was actually something that I actually introduced.”

The prime minister said there are “plenty of things more that we are doing”, adding: “What we want to do is make sure that we have people who are in particular hardship looked after by their councils, so we are putting much more money into local councils.

“We have the particular payments to help elderly people in particular with the cost of heating.”

Pushed on what Elsie should cut back on, he said: “I don’t want Elsie to have to cut back on anything.”

He added: “The best answer is to help her abate the cost of energy as we are, but also… to make sure there’s a direct cut in her council tax as a result of what we’re doing.”

He also raised the winter fuel allowance and other “measures that we’ve put in place to help people”.

He said the UK government is “making sure that we take the steps now to invest in our energy supply” to “ensure that we have the supply for the medium and the long term”.

Speaking to LBC’s Tonight with Andrew Marr, and describing her interview with the prime minister, Ms Reid said: “I’ve spoken to Elsie, since the interview this morning with the Prime Minister, and she says how disappointed she is with what he said.

“Because she says there are people who are even worse off than she is, and there was no answer for them, apart from ‘oh I was the person who was responsible for the bus pass,’ I mean, as if she’s supposed to be grateful.”

Andrew Marr added: “Which is by the way, not entirely accurate itself because it was the London boroughs who brought that in.”

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