Reid's cold weather payment campaign
The worst winter weather so far has hit this week and cold weather payments to pensioners and people in need will be monitored in locations across Argyll and Bute thanks to a successful campaign by Alan Reid MP.
Payments are made when your local temperature is either recorded as, or forecast to be, an average of zero degrees Celsius or below over seven consecutive days.
Mr Reid made sure that payment rules were changed in 2010 for a large part of Argyll, benefitting Oban, Lorn, Lochgilphead, Ardrishaig and most of Mull.
At one time all cold-weather payment decisions were taken from a thermometer reading at Machrihanish only.
"And as anyone who knows Argyll will tell you - that is a positive hot-spot compared to other places; it's got palm trees in the gardens!" said Mr Reid, who has represented Argyll and Bute since 2001.
He added: "A quick look at BBC weather at 2pm today (Monday 19 January) shows a +2C reading for Machrihanish Airport, but -2C for Dalmally and 0C for Oban.
Since 2010, payments for further north are based on a reading at Dunstaffnage, just outside Oban.
Mr Reid campaigned successfully for this change when the winter of 2009/10 saw only one week's cold weather payment declared, despite the temperature in some places being below freezing point for weeks.
See http://www.legislation.gov.uk/uksi/2014/2687/schedule/1/made for weather stations and the post codes they cover.