Poor and vulnerable households across the Midlands are set to benefit from new heating systems, after whg successfully bid for £2.85m of funding to tackle fuel poverty.
Teaming up with energy efficiency specialists AgilityEco, whg put in bids for the cash from the National Grid’s £150m Warm Homes Fund – administered by Affordable Warmth Solutions.
The money will be used to deliver the Connected for Warmth scheme, which will provide 1,000 fully-funded ‘first time’ gas central heating systems and gas connections for fuel-poor homes that are deemed to be struggling with the cost of staying warm.
Paul Dockerill, director of energy and programme management at whg, said: “We believe that everyone has the right to live in a warm and comfortable home.
“The Warm Homes Fund provides a positive step to achieving that, helping households in fuel poverty by reducing energy bills.
“Having affordable heating makes such a big difference to lifestyle and health. This is a great example of partnership and collaboration, and we are proud to be taking a leading part in this project.”
Jeremy Nesbitt, managing director of AWS, said: “Connected for Warmth builds on the great work that’s been done over the last decade to connect thousands of homes to energy-efficient gas heating systems.
“This new scheme will provide a fresh avenue out of fuel poverty for those struggling with the cost of heating their homes.”
He added: “As the temperature drops and we enter what’s projected to be a very cold winter, the need for this kind of scheme has never been stronger.
“Connected for Warmth will be a valuable tool in the fight to ensure no one has to face the heart-breaking choice between heating and eating, and I’m grateful for all the support and expertise we’ve got on board to deliver this exciting programme.”
The funding will be boosted by contributions from Cadent, the gas distribution network operator for the Midlands; private landlords; the Energy Company Obligation (ECO); and the Fuel Poor Network Extension Scheme.
Homes eligible for the Warm Homes Fund will be those heated with old and inefficient storage heaters, room heaters or solid-fuel fires.
In addition, residents must be on a low income and have high energy bills or be vulnerable to the cold because of health conditions.
The Connected for Warmth scheme will be delivered across the entire Cadent gas distribution network that includes the Midlands as well as the North West, the East of England, and North London.