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.
The leading Midlands’ landlord teamed up with energy efficiency specialists AgilityEco to successfully bid for the cash from the National Grid’s £150 million Warm Homes Fund. This has been provided by National Grid and is administered by Affordable Warmth Solutions.
The money will be used to deliver the ‘Connected for Warmth’ scheme which will provide 1000 fully-funded ‘first time’ gas central heating systems and gas connections for fuel poor homes that are 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, who are the gas distribution network operator for the Midlands, as well as private landlords, the Energy Company Obligation (ECO) and the Fuel Poor Network Extension Scheme. Together these funds will ensure that eligible homes won’t need to pay a penny.
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. Both owner-occupiers and private tenants can apply, and tenants will need the permission of their landlord.
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.
To find out more, and to check if you are eligible please visit www.connectedforwarmth.org.uk or call free on 0800 029 4547.