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330 homes in Derbyshire get efficiency retrofit

A project to improve the energy efficiency of 330 social houses in North East Derbyshire has helped residents save money on energy bills and reduce their carbon emissions.

The regeneration work, which was carried out between June 2015 and January, included the installation of thermal wall insulation, as well as energy-efficient double glazing to properties built in the Reema style. These homes, which were mainly constructed from prefabricated reinforced concrete panels, were built during the 1950s and 1960s but they are difficult to heat and keep warm, meaning that residents often face high heating bills and are more susceptible to fuel poverty.

Rykneld Homes appointed Westdale Services Ltd to manage and deliver the energy efficiency measures. Part of the funding for the project came from EDF Energy as part of the Energy Company Obligation Scheme (ECO). The scheme, which is set to run until March 2017, was being revised by the now-defunct Department of Energy and Climate Change. It is expected that the programme will be replaced with a new version that is less extensive.

Commenting on the project in North East Derbyshire, EDF Energy said that the work would help to tackle fuel poverty in the area. Tenants should see a reduction in their energy bills and it is estimated that the works will save around 16,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide emissions.

In June, the project was named Best Regional Large-Scale Project at the Yorkshire and Humberside Energy Efficiency and Retrofit Awards. At the time, Mark Dallen, business development account manager at EDF Energy said it was "great to get recognition for this successful project."

Mr Dallen also pointed out that his firm is working on a number of similar projects across the country. "This partnership with Westdale Services and Rykneld Homes is just one of a number of energy efficiency projects being funded by EDF Energy across the UK under the ECO scheme," he said.

Westdale Services is also taking steps to ensure other properties are more energy efficient. For example, the firm is currently working on a project to regenerate a number of homes near Sheffield in the village of Renishaw.