THE Chancellor has "absolutely no idea how difficult it is" to live, it was claimed as protesters staged a demonstration outside his constituency office against rising bills.

Dozens of protesters from Unite gathered outside Chancellor and Richmond MP Rishi Sunak's office in Northallerton on Friday (March 18).

It comes as North East and North Yorkshire homeowners and tenants have been stung by soaring energy bills as the cost-of-living crisis continues.

Read more: Woman takes her dog and travels on a bus because she can't afford the heating

At the protest, many members held up signs reading #StuckInTheRed and #CostOfLivingCrisis as well as “Government action – overdue.”

Darlington and Stockton Times: Protesters gathering outside Rishi Sunak's Northallerton officeProtesters gathering outside Rishi Sunak's Northallerton office

Protesters were heard chanting “Rishi, we can’t afford to live” as some described of how the cost-of-living crisis had impacted those vulnerable in the community.

One woman, Rachael Tomlinson stressed that the chancellor “has absolutely no idea how difficult it is for us to live.”

She said: “I don’t think he understands the predicament people have, especially the disabled and people who are in poverty.

Read more: The top 9 camping and caravan sites in the North East according to TripAdvisor

“To be fair it will affect a lot more than just those people, I know when talking to friends that are working, but I know they’re saying exactly the same thing as me, how am I going to be able to afford to pay our bills.”

Rachael said that she will soon begin to struggle after her projected increase in gas and electricity prices had “gone up two-thirds in three years.”

Darlington and Stockton Times: Rachael Tomlinson Picture: CONNOR LARMANRachael Tomlinson Picture: CONNOR LARMAN

She told The Echo: “I will be struggling, my gas and electricity has gone up £50 a month and I’m only in a one-bedroom bungalow.

“It’s gone up two-thirds in three years, it started off at £63 now it’s at £155 or something, then there’s even the council tax which they’re supposed to be giving us £150, but my council tax has gone up by £150.”

Darlington and Stockton Times: Protesters gathering outside Rishi Sunak's Northallerton officeProtesters gathering outside Rishi Sunak's Northallerton office

Darlington and Stockton Times: Steve Jackson Picture: CONNOR LARMANSteve Jackson Picture: CONNOR LARMAN

Another protester, Steve Jackson said the Chancellor was “not taking any notice of the common man.”

Mr Jackson argued that the Government needs to start thinking not as “classes but as human beings” stressing that “things need to change.”

He said: “Everyone I know has money problems, and I’m a pensioner, I get a pension, it’s £758 a month, and that’s the pension, I have a private pension, I was fortunate enough to be able to do that.

Read more: Staff paid thousands after Darlington Chinese buffet closed after one shift

“Some people can’t afford to put into a private pension now, but even so I’m still looking at the prices of things and thinking, this is just ridiculous.”

Darlington and Stockton Times: Protesters gathering outside of Rishi Sunak's Northallerton officeProtesters gathering outside of Rishi Sunak's Northallerton office

The protesters then called on the Chancellor to introduce a “windfall tax on the energy suppliers,” claiming energy suppliers were making a profit while others lived on the breadline.

Read more: Woman who tried to hide drugs in her bra among 17 people arrested in drugs bust

Speaking on the cost of living crisis today, the Chancellor vowed to help the public “where we can”  but admitted that the Government cannot “solve every problem”.

Speaking in conversation at the Conservative Party spring conference in Blackpool, Mr Sunak said it had felt like the UK Government was lurching from “crisis to crisis”, having only been appointed Chancellor a few weeks before the coronavirus lockdown.

Mr Sunak said: “I have enormous sympathy for what people are going through at the moment and that’s why we will always be there to help make a difference where we can,” said Mr Sunak.

“I can’t solve every problem, no government can solve every problem, particularly when you are grappling with global inflationary forces – they are somewhat out of my control.

“But as you saw a month or so ago when we announced the very significant intervention to help people meet some of the additional costs of energy bills, where we can make a difference, of course I can – I’m always going to do that, we’ve done it over the last two years.”