April saw slight falls in the average price of diesel and petrol at UK filling stations, following three months of steep increases, according to RAC data.

The motoring organisation said the cost of the average litre of diesel fell by 0.1p during the month, to 177.31p, while the average litre of petrol fell by 0.5p, to 162.75p.

The RAC said that the price of oil had increased slightly during the month, while wholesale fuel also became more expensive due to a weakening of the pound against the dollar.

RAC spokesman Simon Williams said: “After three months of nightmarish price rises, April finally saw an end to seemingly endless forecourt hikes.

“Although the price of oil has cooled considerably, there’s still plenty of uncertainty in the market which is leading to prices jumping around a lot. This coupled with the exchange rate worsening isn’t good for drivers and news that the EU is planning to phase out Russian oil is likely to cause the barrel price to rise.

“However, retailers really should have passed on the savings they were benefitting from when wholesale prices were lower earlier in April; sadly for drivers this didn’t happen. Instead, the biggest retailers, which buy most frequently held out, protecting themselves from future rises. They will no doubt feel they were justified in not lowering their forecourt prices as wholesale costs are now rising again, in part due to the pound losing ground on the dollar, making it more expensive for retailers when they buy new stock.

“It’s also very much the case that retailers’ margins were far higher in April than they were in March. RAC Fuel Watch data estimates they took around 4p more a litre than they did over the course of the previous month. This will surely be a disappointment to the Chancellor who cut fuel duty by 5p a litre in the Spring Statement.”