According to the Heating & Hot Water Industry Council's (HHIC) quarterly statistical analysis, the 12 months rolling were down 0.3%, which shows the market is still struggling despite stronger monthly sales.

HHIC is calling for the chancellor George Osborne in his Budget to invest in a programme of housebuilding and increase energy efficiency through home refurbishment.

Roger Webb, HHIC director, said: “It is more positive that monthly sales have increased but manufacturers understand only too well that this does not predict the overall picture. The boiler market is still struggling and will continue to do so unless the government supports other measures to stimulate the market further.

"With the UK’s old draughty housing and many homes still using an inefficient boiler, it is vital that the government supports new housebuilding and refurbishment programmes that will help with the carbon emissions targets but also with rising energy bills too.”