Off-grid Households to Receive Energy-Efficient Boost
Homeowners in Chesterfield who have no mains gas supply to their property could benefit from financial support. How will this help them make their homes more energy-efficient and boost the community?

Chesterfield Borough Council, Marches Energy Agency (MEA), and E.ON Energy Solutions have come together to help local residents to make their homes warmer and more energy-efficient.

It comes after Chesterfield Borough Council successfully secured over £440,000 through the UK Government’s Home Upgrade Grand Phase 2 (HUG2).

Maximising funding will be key for councils to support their residents

Grant funding will be used to help improve the energy-efficiency of at least 22 homes in the borough.

A technical survey will be conducted, improvement measures will be dependent on the outcome of this.

These improvement measures could include the introduction of a range of improvements from insulation and solar panels to air-source heat pumps and smart heating controls.

Councillor Jean Innes, Chesterfield Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Housing, explained that these improvements could be key in saving residents money on their energy bills whilst also reducing GHG emissions.

The Councillor said: “We understand that it’s a difficult time for many people as the cost of living continues to rise.

“With funding secured through this scheme we can support homeowners in making improvements to their home to help to increase the warmth and comfort of their homes, whilst also reducing energy bills and carbon emissions.”

On how important local people are to the council, she continued: “Despite facing significant financial pressures now and in future years, the council is committed to supporting those most in need during the cost-of-living crisis, and is doing all it can to maximise external funding opportunities like this, to help households across the borough.”

The Councillor added that the technical surveys that will be conducted will ensure that every different situation’s needs are being met: “The funding will help to improve the energy performance and heating systems of off gas grid private sector homes and we will be carrying out technical surveys to make sure the most appropriate and efficient improvements can be made at each home.”

Chesterfield Borough Council is aiming to be carbon neutral by 2050

Funding will be available to homeowners who don’t have a mains gas heating system and where their property has a valid EPC rating of D, E, F or G, and will only be eligible if one of the below following statements applies.

The first is that the homeowner lives in one of the eligible postcode areas set by the UK Government. Following this is that a permanent member of the household receives a means-tested benefit. Then the third is the combined household income is below £31,000 before tax.

Residents living in private rented accommodation may also be eligible for support, however, the landlord will be required to contribute a minimum of a third of the total cost.

Councillor Martin Stone, Chesterfield Borough Council’s Cabinet Member for Climate Change, Planning and Environment, commented on the importance of this funding to tackle environmental issues caused by carbon.

The Councillor said: “The energy we use to heat and power buildings is one of the largest factors in terms of carbon emissions, if we can make buildings more efficient and reduce energy loss, we will see carbon emissions reduce also.

“Supporting and promoting schemes like these grants which will help homeowners to improve thermal efficiency is vital to achieving our target of becoming a carbon neutral borough by 2050.”

Ensuring that off-grid households like the ones in Chesterfield are provided with support and funding is crucial to helping them make their homes more energy-efficient.

In addition, through the funding, it will ensure that these homes are part of the community and aren’t cut off from others in the area.