An extra £3m for warmer, greener Suffolk homes
More Suffolk residents, including those in Babergh and Mid Suffolk, are set to benefit from Government Green Homes Grants thanks to a further successful bid for £3m funding by a Suffolk consortium of local authorities.
This funding adds to a previous award of £1m secured last year.
The funding, provided by the Department of Business Energy and Industrial Strategy, will provide energy efficiency measures for owner occupiers of properties with poor energy performance ratings.
Partner local authorities are already working on delivering five projects by March 2021, and have a completion deadline of September for the five new schemes. These are external wall insulation of 100 park homes in West Suffolk, 150 park homes in East Suffolk, and 70 Flagship Group properties, insulation and air source heat pumps on 100 homes in Babergh and Mid Suffolk, and internal wall insulation for 10 properties through Leiston Net Zero/EDF.
The Greener Homes scheme, which is designed to help make homes more energy efficient, is also available direct to homeowners, as well as to councils, offering vouchers up to £5000 to households to get energy saving work done. The scheme is open until March 2022.
Cllr John Griffiths, Leader of West Suffolk Council, which led the consortium bid, said,
“I am delighted to see how our track record on working together across Suffolk on the climate emergency is helping to reduce fuel bills for more of our residents.
"West Suffolk alone has some 550 park homes, a type of housing with generally poor insulation and which occupiers can sometimes struggle to heat. The window for making these bids, and for delivering the projects is extremely tight, but by close collaboration and by partners having schemes ready, we were able to secure this very welcome funding.
"This opportunity is also available direct to householders, and information on how to go about benefitting is on the Green Suffolk website. By making your homes more energy efficient, you could be warmer, save on fuel bills and, of course, do your part in working towards a carbon neutral Suffolk by 2030.”
The project bided for by Babergh and Mid Suffolk District Councils as part of the £3m, is to retrofit 100 socially rented properties with insulation and renewable heating. This will increase the remit of a planned retrofit scheme.
Measures will comprise external wall insulation, loft insulation top ups and air source heat pumps. The council expects an average cost per property of £11,000, of which BMS will contribute £6,000.
Property eligibility will be determined by identifying properties with eligible EPC ratings via BMS’s asset database and verifying these against Ministry of Housing, Communities and Local Government (MHCLG) records.
Household eligibility will be determined using means tested benefits from tenancy details.
Cllr John Ward, Babergh District Council Leader, said:
“Thanks to this grant we can now make even more of our homes across the district energy efficient. All while reducing our carbon emissions and impact on the environment.
“This will not only work towards the aims of our Carbon Reduction Management Plan but will also improve quality of life for some of our lower income households, helping to reduce fuel poverty.”
Cllr Suzie Morley, Mid Suffolk District Council Leader, said:
“This funding is great news for our tenants and will play an important role in helping to achieve our carbon neutral ambitions.
“Ensuring our housing stock is of a high standard and provides safe, warm and secure places to live remains our priority. We are committed to investigating further funding to improve our homes, in order to reduce our carbon emissions and support the wellbeing of our community in the place we’re proud to call home.”