Contrary to reports, independent fuel retailers have helped to lead fuel prices down with several reporting that they had dropped prices below local supermarket competition, according to Brian Madderson, chairman of the Petrol Retailers’ Association (PRA).

The PRA has reacted to claims in the AA’s November fuel price report that as wholesale prices drop retailers are not passing on these savings to their customers.

Madderson stressed: "While the AA report explored the disparity between petrol wholesale prices and prices at the pump, it did not look at the diesel market, which in fact now has a larger share of the retail fuels market. Diesel wholesale prices are only down by about 3ppl and pump prices at independent forecourts definitely reflect this."

The AA report stated that the average UK petrol price should have been knocked down by 10-11ppl, but after reaching a plateau of around 139ppl in mid October, was down by less than 4ppl by November 12.