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Community energy, discount supermarkets

56 minutes
First broadcast:
Wednesday 19 February 2014

Living next door to a wind farm might not sound too appealing. But would you feel differently if it helped to reduce your energy bills, and you partly owned it? The government recently unveiled its Community Energy Strategy which aims to encourage consumers to be more closely involved in how their electricity is generated and supplied. Ministers are keen for developers to share ownership of wind-farms with local communities, which could create a cash-boost for towns and villages.

Discount supermarkets Aldi and Lidl are enjoying a boom just now, with rising sales. Their market share is still small, but it is growing as more people choose to shop in the cheaper stores. But why are people changing their shopping habits? Is it just a desire to save money? One retail expert thinks that some consumers are turning away from the UK's big four supermarkets in what he calls "anti-corporatism".

There seems to be no end to the apps you can download on your smartphone. Now there are specialist health apps, which allow you to constantly monitor things like your blood pressure, how well you are sleeping and how much exercise you are doing. But can they really help you to live a healthy life, or could they turn you into a hypochondriac?

And for those who like to plan ahead - is there any sense at all in starting to save now for Christmas? We ask whether traditional Christmas savings clubs are good value for money.

Producer: Jonathan Hallewell
Presenter: Peter White.


9 items
  • Sharing Energy

    The government says communities should be offered a share of renewable energy projects

  • Supermarkets

    How much can you tell about supermarket products by checking the labels?

  • Folic Acid

    Should folic acid be added to bread to help reduce cases of spina bifida?

  • Car Recalls

    What happens when car manufacturers order a recall?

  • Budget Supermarkets

    Why discount supermarkets are increasing their sales and market share.

  • Holiday Islands

    Lewis and Harris is named as the best island to visit in Europe

  • Health Apps

    Smartphone health apps allow you to monitor your fitness, but do they really work?

  • Saving for Christmas

    Do traditional Christmas savings clubs represent good value for money?

  • Dentists

    The union Unison says more and more people are going to A+E for dental treatment



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