More Money in Your Pocket

There's lots of different information and campaigns that run to help people with the cost of living. Below are some of the key ones that are good to check to make sure you're receiving all of the support you should be.

Pension Credit

Pension Credit gives you extra money to help with your living costs if you’ve over the State Pension age and on a low income. It can also give you access to a range of other benefits. This can include helping with housing costs, Council Tax, heating bills, and for those 75 or over - a free TV licence.

Although take up of Pension Credit is high, many people are missing out.

You can check if you’re eligible and claim on GOV.UK.

Child Benefit

Child Benefit is for parents of all children under 16, and under 20 if in full time education. Regardless of what you earn, it's worth registering for Child Benefit as there are plenty of benefits to it:

  • It triggers your eligibility for national insurance credits, which can affect how much State Pension you're eligible for.
  • It means your child will automatically get a National Insurance number before they hit 16.
  • If you’re earning above the limit for Child Benefit, you can still register for it and opt out of receiving it, meaning you still receive the other benefits.

Other things to check with Child Benefit:

You need to check that its in the right partner’s name. Child Benefit can only be registered in one name. This should be the partner who earns the least because if you're earning, or ever earn under £123 per week you will still receive a National Insurance credit which you wouldn’t have otherwise. This will potentially boost your future state pension. This can be transferred and backdated if needed.

Find out more and apply for Child Benefit.

National Insurance credits

National Insurance credits build up while you're in work and are used to decide how much State Pension you're eligible for. Most people need 35+ years of National Insurance credits to qualify for the full state pension. These years are earned by being paid at least £123 per week from employment.

You can check your current level of National Insurance credits on your Personal Tax Account with HMRC.

If you're caring for a child and earning less than £123 per week, then claiming Child Benefit will cover your National Insurance credits.

If you claimed Child Benefit for the first time before May 2000, then you may be missing out on some of these credits. Since the 1978/79 financial year the Home Responsibilities Protection was supposed to be in place to cover these credits. For many people this wasn't implemented properly.

The first thing to do is to check your National Insurance credits. If you believe you're missing some years due to the above then contact the Pension Service.


Freebies and money saving ideas

Whether you're looking for days out and things to do, where you can access the internet for free, or how you can read books and magazines without the cost, we have a range of ideas to help.

Barnsley Museums

Spring into action at Barnsley Museums! Our museums and galleries are fantastic, pocket friendly places to spend time in. They have lots of free events and activities.

There's lots of new and free activities and events running this spring. Our events provide plenty of fun, whatever your age!

Find out more on the Barnsley Museums website.

Barnsley Libraries

Our libraries are a welcoming hub for the community where you can meet, learn, discover and access services. Whether you want to get online, join in with activities and events, borrow a book or need somewhere to study, you're sure to find something for you.

Find out more on the Libraries webpage.

Internet access

You can access the internet at all of our libraries by connecting your smartphone, tablet or laptop to our free WiFi. You can also use our PCs for up to two hours a day - to get online or use office applications.

Find out more about using the internet in our libraries.


If you enjoy reading a good book, you might not need to buy these for yourself. You can borrow a range of fiction and non-fiction books from your local library for free. Find out about borrowing books and reading.

If your local branch doesn't have the book you're looking for, you can request it to be sent from another Barnsley library branch free of charge. You can do this through your library account.

Textbooks for studying

If you need to use an expensive textbook for your studies and we don't have it in stock at our libraries, we may be able to borrow it from another library for a small charge. This is much cheaper than you needing to buy the book.

Find out about charges for borrowing books from other libraries.

eBooks, audiobooks and digital magazines

If you're a library member you can access a range of eBooks, audiobooks and digital magazines on your smartphone or tablet for free.

Find out about eBooks, eAudio and digital magazines.

Help with travel to school

Some pupils may be able to get help with the cost of travelling to school or other place of education.

Find out about help with travel to school.

Free things to do

There's lots of fun and free activities for children and the whole family, including clubs, groups and leisure activities. Search the Barnsley Virtual Family Hub to find out what's on.

Live Well Barnsley includes services, groups, activities and events that aid the health and wellbeing of the people of Barnsley.

Staying active

Being active and taking regular exercise is one of the best ways to look after your health and wellbeing. What's Your Move is about helping Barnsley to be more active for good physical and mental health.

There's something for everyone to help us move more, whether it's playing sports, cycling, swimming or walking.

Find out more at What's Your Move.

Stay active for less

The Barnsley Leisure Card gives you a discount on a variety of sports activities across Barnsley Premier Leisure (BPL) sites. You can find out if you're eligible for the card and apply on the BPL website.

Find out about the Barnsley Leisure Card.

School holiday clubs

Our Healthy Holidays clubs support families who might need extra help to access food and activities to keep their children healthy through the school holidays.

Children who receive free school meals as you/they receive a qualifying benefit can have a free place at our Healthy Holidays clubs.

Find out about Healthy Holidays.

Resources for business owners

The Business and Intellectual Property Centre (BIPC) provides support to business owners and inventors to start, run and grow their business.

A range of digital resources are available to access for free through our libraries. You can also book a one-to-one session with a BIPC specialist if you need to.

Find out more about digital resources for business owners.