85 per cent of rural households have said policies on home heating will influence how they cast their vote at the election.

According to a survey by the Future Ready Fuel campaign, these households, many of which rely on oil heating, feel they should be able to decide what heating system they install when it needs replacing.

The poll of 1,000 rural homeowners also found that the majority would prefer to switch to renewable liquid fuels rather than the government-suggested heat pump.

Households are also more concerned now than three years ago.

(Image: OFTEC)

Paul Rose, CEO of OFTEC, and Ken Cronin, CEO of UKIFDA, backers of the Future Ready Fuel campaign, said: "At the start of the general election, this survey reveals that the policies political parties set out for switching rural homes onto low carbon heating will be an important factor in how households vote.

"In this election, rural off-grid households now must have the certainty they need to be able to choose how best they can make their contribution to achieving net zero.

"We stand ready to work with the next government to make that a reality."

They emphasised that there is overwhelming public support for renewable liquid fuels.