Energy efficiency advice • Completed July 2018
Elthorne Pride has been set up to service the 10-year Big Local grant aimed at residents of the neighbourhood. Steve Scotland from Elthorne Pride approached PUNL for support with preparing a grant application under the Islington Community Energy Fund so that he could initiate environmentally focused projects for the neighbourhood. We decided to start by focusing on energy efficiency workshops and investigating the feasibility of PV solar in the common hallways and staircases of the neighbourhood.
Funding & delivery
Elthorne Pride received £2,500 of ICEF grant funding to be matched by their Big Local funding. The funds were used to run energy efficiency workshops and to do the initial investigations into the feasibility of solar PV for the Elthorne Pride neighbourhood.
PUNL partnered with Thinking Works to run the energy efficiency workshops. The first involved an Energy Stall on 3 June 2018 as part of the Big International Lunch organised by Elthorne Pride. The second event was held on 10th June 2018 when a group of Elthorne Pride residents went on an outing to Tiptree Farm in Essex. Thinking Works held an interactive workshop with the residents on energy savings, including, how to read their electricity bill, how to take advantage of lower tariffs by switching and ways to reduce energy use in their homes.
PUNL also gathered data on the electricity usage in the communal areas of the Elthorne Pride neighbourhood as part of high-level feasibility for solar PV and met with residents at a TMO meeting. Having analysed the communal bills PUNL were pleased to see that the tariff being applied was quite competitive. There were also rooftop panels over some of the homes. PUNL recommended that the potential to introduce PV solar in the communal areas should be pursued if the benefit could be passed on to the residents through a reduction in their electricity charges.
Benefits & impact
At the Big lunch, PUNL partnered with Thinking Works to provide advice on reducing energy bills, alerting people to support schemes like Shine and addressing specific energy related issues they may have. Over 30 people attended a session or sought advice at the 3 June Energy Stall that was also visited by the Islington Mayor Cllr Dave Posner. On the 10th of June an additional 40 people attended the energy workshop. On both occasions attendees were also given complimentary low energy light bulbs to take away and try in their homes.
“I’m really, really glad I came over to your stall – thank you so much”.
Anne (not real name) was feeling very low. EDF had given her a bill for £3000 stating they hadn’t had a meter reading for three years when she had let EDF badged meter-readers in four times over this period. The cause of the high bills was that Anne lives above a garage in a flat that has a flat roof. Neither the flat nor the roof are insulated so heat disappears far too quickly making the home very expensive to keep warm. Her son suffers from a severe type of asthma and so they need to keep the home warm to keep him in good health.
We explained that Charis administers a grant on behalf of energy suppliers that has a discretionary grant pot of over £11 million to help people in financial hardship. We also gave Anne details of the Islington SHINE service and explained they could help support an application to the council to have insulation installed in her home on health grounds. This would make a strong case for Charis to wipe the debt as the home should be cheaper to run in future. Anne thanked us when she left saying “I’m really, really glad I came over to your stall – thank you so much”