NEW official figures reveal Barnsley residents owe more than £12.5million in unpaid council tax.

A national debt charity is warning people in the area to seek free advice if they are struggling to keep up with their council tax payments.

Residents in the borough owed £12,513,000 in unpaid council tax bills as of March 31 – equivalent to an average of £116 per household. The figure is up from £11,103,000 on the previous year, placing Barnsley in the top 30 per cent of local authorities for council tax arrears in England.

A total of 659 calls for help with debt were made from the Barnsley area to National Debtline last year, with residents receiving free advice on how to resolve their financial difficulties.
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Free online advice is available at