Twenty nine MPs, including ex-Home Secretary Priti Patel, have written to Chancellor Jeremy Hunt demanding he launch a PumpWatch commissioner.

The letter follows confirmation from the Leader of the House MP Penny Mordant, during an exchange in the House of Commons on 1 December last year, that the government is considering the idea, which was first mooted by campaign group FairFuelUK as a way of monitoring and stopping inflated fuel prices and profiteering by oil companies and their distributors.

The letter, coordinated by Tory MP Jonathan Gullis, points out that between 10 October and 8 December, diesel prices hardly changed despite the wholesale cost plunging by 25%, whilst petrol prices fell just 3%, despite wholesale petrol costs tumbling by 22%.

Dame Andrea Leadsom MP states in the letter: “I hope the government will look seriously at FairFuelUK’s proposal for a Pump Watch Commissioner to make sure customers are paying a fair price at the pump, and that the Chancellor will continue the welcome fuel duty freezes of the last decade."

Jonathan Gullis MP added: “PumpWatch will be a popular antidote to inflationary pressure. It will cost the government very little to implement and simply involve a small team of analysts headed by the independent consumer fuel campaigning expert, Howard Cox.

“PumpWatch is not complicated but its implementation could restore confidence in Britain’s appalling opaque fuel market."

Craig Mackinlay MP and chair of the Fair Fuel APPG said: "Wholesale oil prices are way down from historic highs but the price at the pump has moved down by mere buttons.

“It is now even more obvious that motorists are being fleeced by the fuel retailers and it’s time for a Pumpwatch price monitor to highlight the truth and bring such blatant profiteering to heel."

Howard Cox, founder of FairFuelUK, welcomed the growing support from MPs. He said: “For years and years there's been a foul stench of sickening exploitation hanging around thousands of garage forecourts, despite falling wholesale and oil costs.

“We should be seeing fuel price signposts across the country, 10-20p per litre lower for diesel and petrol. What’s more, this surprisingly and increasingly anti-motorist Tory administration seems to be sitting back, dare I say it, almost encouraging the fuel supply chain to continue to fleece drivers at the pumps.

“Don’t forget the billions of extra VAT pouring into the Treasury due to eye watering pump prices. PumpWatch is way past critical, to stop the fuel supply chain continually fleecing motorists at will.”