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On Your Behalf


Linda McAuley champions the cause of consumers in Northern Ireland, helping them to solve their problems, make the right choices and avoid the pitfalls - contact the show with your consumer and benefits queries: Write to: OYB BBC Ormeau Avenue BELFAST BT2 8HQ


London, United Kingdom




Linda McAuley champions the cause of consumers in Northern Ireland, helping them to solve their problems, make the right choices and avoid the pitfalls - contact the show with your consumer and benefits queries: Write to: OYB BBC Ormeau Avenue BELFAST BT2 8HQ




Floods, Christmas Shopping and Post

One month after devastating floods in Downpatrick Linda meets traders to see if they can get back to business in time for Christmas. Consumer guru Jimmy Hughes is in the studio with his list of Christmas do’s and don’ts and to answer listener queries. And Michael Legge from the Consumer Council gets us up to date with Christmas postal dates and parcel advice. It’s Energy Saving Week and we investigate whether Geo-Energy has a future in Northern Ireland.


On Your Behalf: Floods, Christmas Shopping and Post

Floods, Christmas shopping and post.


The Cost of Caring

Carers NI latest research shows that unpaid carers are saving the economy £5.8 billion a year. Linda looks at the research and talks to a woman who has been caring for her mother for thirty years. Simon Murray from the Law Society joins Linda in the studio to answer listener questions on wills and power of attorney. And ahead of Energy Saving Week Kevin McGarry from the Energy Saving Trust has tips on saving money and we look at the potential for Geo-Energy in Northern Ireland. Finally we help one listener who faced losing 48 percent of her tax refund to a company she had never heard of.


Benefits, Borders and Black Friday

Universal credit – six benefits into one - affects hundreds of thousands of people in Northern Ireland. All those on legacy benefits are now being transferred. Linda visits Limavady Jobs and Benefits Office to see how the process works. Paddy Rooney from the Dept of Communities and Kevin Higgins from Advice NI are in the studio to answer questions. Linda also talks to optician Sam Baird about why the move to Universal Credit is affecting free eye and dental care. We also help one listener who is paying a daily roaming charge on her mobile phone despite never crossing the border and brace ourselves for the Black Friday sales. Consumer Expert Martyn James tells Linda why the bargains are not all they are cracked up to be and how to protect yourself from scams.


Food, Fuel and Flu Jabs

Winter is here and food and energy costs are still very high. Linda talks to Philippa Mckeown-Brown and Raymond Gormley from the Consumer Council about how to get the best deals possible. It’s flu season but take up of this year’s vaccine is lagging behind in Northern Ireland. Linda talks to Dr Hilary Jones about the reasons behind the reluctance. We also follow up on the case of the fire that destroyed lots of wedding dresses but so far the insurance has not paid out. And Cash v Card – Is Linda selfish for using her phone to pay for a newspaper? One listener thinks so but UK finance has a more measured approach.


Floods and Insurance

After the devastation brought by flooding to many parts of Northern Ireland, Paul Hatty, spokesperson for The British Insurance Brokers Association, explains what insurance can and cannot do in regards to claims. He also has advice for a number of listeners about claiming for dental work with travel insurance and how postcodes can change the amount you pay for insurance. Also, consumer expert Alice Beer has some tips to take some of the financial stress out of the fast approaching Christmas season.


Costly Caring, Banking Hubs and Digital Poverty

Your nearest bank is your Post Office , that's what it says on the bill hoardings! But is that enough to fill the gap when your bank shuts up shop? Linda visits a new banking hub in Holywood post office to see what people think. It costs to care. New research shows almost half the carers in Northern Ireland are living in poverty. Linda hears from Barbara who cares for 2 autistic children and Craig Harrison from Carers NI who thinks the benefit system is failing carers. Also on the programme the Trussell trust explains why their food banks are giving out Sim Cards and we hear from the Consumer Council on passenger rights when things go wrong at airports.


Parenting, Tech Help and Travel

This week we look at the financial reality for single and separated parents. Linda joins Parenting NI at Stormont as they highlight the daily struggle faced by many. Have you heard of AbilityNet? We hadn't but it's a charity that provides free IT support to older people and people with a disability. Linda goes on a house call to help one client learn how to get connected online. And On a wet stormy week we look at current travel hotspots and also talk to ATOL about protecting your package holidays.


Universal Credit, Book Week and Conveyancing fees

The migration to Universal Credit is upon us and people on a range of benefits will be receiving letters to migrate to the new system. We ask Paddy Rooney, Deputy Permanent Secretary for Welfare and Benefits at the Dept for Communities and Kevin Higgins from Advice N.I. what the practicalities are. Also, Samantha Gallagher, Assistant Manager and Welfare Rights Specialist with Fermanagh Community Advice centre will be telling us how Universal Credit will affect the rural community. It's Book Week across BBC Radio Ulster, Foyle and Sounds and Peter Hughes of Libraries NI has news of new apps from libraries allowing you to borrow e-books, and read magazines and newspapers. Solicitor Simon Murray and Charted Surveyor Samuel Dicky have information about how the conveyancing process has changed to make it easier for consumers.


Death, Deeds and Mental Health

Over a third of adults in the UK have no idea what kind of help is available when it comes to end of life care. Sara talks to Ciara Gallagher from Marie Curie about why we need to talk about this and also what support is available. We also have lots of listener queries including Johns lost deeds, Patricks frozen bank account, Paul’s unfrozen food and John’s boiler replacement scheme woes. Finally Liam Neeson is looking for you, he will find you and he will help you. Find out why the Hollywood star is supporting a new service here called FindhelpNi that will connect people to over 400 health and community groups.



Linda McAuley champions the cause of consumers in Northern Ireland, helping them to solve their problems, make the right choices and avoid the pitfalls - contact the show with your consumer and benefits queries: Write to: OYB BBC Ormeau Avenue BELFAST BT2 8HQ


Landlines, Childcare and Cancer

We're talking about the move from landlines to Digital Voice BT's new digital phone service. Linda visits the BT roadshow to find out what happens if there's a power cut or if you have a personal safety or burglar alarm. We're talking about the cost of childcare and about the challenges for childcare providers with Aoife Hamilton from Employers for Childcare and Becca Harper from Melted Parents. Also the experiences of blind and partially sighted people who are also living with cancer and the additional barriers they face. And if there's a young adult in your household there may be a pot of gold waiting for them from the Child Trust Fund.


Ageism, Landlines and Car Hire Woes.

The Car hire traps that can cost you thousands of pounds – if you are 59 minutes lates then they can cancel your booking. Linda talks to Guy Hobbs from Consumer group Which. She also joins the Commissioner for Older People at a roadshow in Armagh and helps the listeners bumped of a flight by Loganair. And in the biggest change in a generation James Stinson from OFCOM tells Linda how the move from copper wires to broadband for phonelines will work.


Caravans, Consumer Woes and Tax Refunds

The Leaky Caravan that didn't do well during the wettest July on record, the listener still being charged for a bed that was never delivered and the tax refund that shrank when an online firm got involved. Also can a shop change its mind after you have bought and paid for something? Consumer Guru Jimmy Hughes joins Linda to sort out our listener woes.


Back to School, Flight Chaos and 90s Broadband

Its back to school this week with School uniforms, mobile phones and everything in between - it all adds up to a big bill for parents. Siobhan Harding from the Womens Support Network and Matt Cole from Advice NI join Linda to talk about the help that is available. Also on the programme when should kids get mobile phones and are earbuds destroying young people's hearing? Audiologist Feraz Ashraf is worried. And if you were caught up in this week's flight chaos can you get compensation. Andrew McConnell from the CAA says the answer is Yes and No! Finally jump aboard the Tardis with one of our listeners whose Broadband Connection is taking him back to the 1990's.


Gone fishing, breaking down in England, and a Child Benefit deadline

Some anglers at Loughgall Country Park aren't happy with changes that mean going fishing can't be a spontaneous decision but now needs 48 hours notice to access the lakeside. If you break down on the side of the road in England will your breakdown cover get you and your vehicle home? We hear from one family whose van has been in limbo for three and a half weeks. And with GCSE results out this week, child benefit will stop for some children unless parents tell HMRC that their children are staying in education. Linda McAuley finds out more.


The tool library

Linda McAuley hears about a library that can help your next DIY job. What financial pressures are parents under with uniforms and other charges in the run up to schools going back? A listener's car was recalled with an airbag safety issue, but the dealer was slow to fix it. And do you need a licence to listen to music in work?


Student Special

Linda McAuley is joined by a panel from Further and Higher Education colleges, and from Housing Rights, to discuss the options facing students who are hoping to enter third level education in September. How does clearing work? What pitfalls should be avoided when signing up for accommodation? Tips for financial management? And how courses – vocational as well as academic – can be accessed in different ways, at different ages and stages, not just when you’re 18.


Post Offices, ‘Sensory Xperience’ and E-Bike Fires

The changing face of The Post Office as they move from stand alone buildings on the high street to being incorporated into filling stations and local shops. A new ‘Sensory Xperience’ for autistic children and adults has opened in Armagh. Why a local football club is 3 thousand pounds out of pocket because of flight delays and E-Bikes and E-Scooters and the danger of lithium-ion battery fires and what can be done to charge them safely.


Ferries, Flights and Flexible Working

Richard Williams from the Consumer Council explains your rights whether you're travelling by ferry or flight. Sinéad Campbell from Advice N.I. has some financial advice for parents struggling through the school holidays. Mark McAllister from the Labour Relations Agency explains why the Flexible Working Act isn't being implemented in N.I. and Philippa McKeown-Brown from the Consumer Council on people with food hyper-sensitivities.