Work has begun to properties on Alston Road to make them more energy efficient, helping residents reduce their carbon emissions and save on energy bills. The properties will be fitted with external wall insulation (EWI), a layer of insulation that’s fixed onto an existing external wall. Typically, domestic homes lose 35% of heating through their wall so EWI is one of the key elements of ‘retrofitting’, the process of making existing buildings more energy efficient.
EWI can significantly reduce heat loss from a building, which means that less energy is required to maintain a comfortable temperature. The benefit can often be felt all year round as homes are likely to retain heat and stay warmer in the winter, whilst at the other end of the temperature scale they are better equipped to keep heat out in the summer.
This is a joint scheme where SMBC are working in collaboration with Solihull Community housing to complete a placed based retrofit project. Over 50 homes in total will benefit from the measures, with 45 being Solihull Community Housing properties.
The improvement works are being part funded by the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF) for social housing and the Sustainable Warmth programme for private homes. The scheme aims to improve the energy performance of social rented and private owner occupier homes, on the pathway towards reaching net zero emissions. The scheme is helping to support green jobs and the emerging retrofit sector. For this project, Solihull Council has partnered with Sustainable Building Services (SBS) to implement the improvement works.
Councillor Andy Mackiewicz, Cabinet Portfolio Officer for Climate Change, Planning and Housing, said:
“It’s fantastic to see the external wall insulation improvements have begun on Alston Road. Tackling emissions from buildings is one of our top priorities given that 56% of all emissions come from buildings in Solihull.
“We’re in no doubt of the immensity of the task at hand, but this is another positive step we’re taking. Installing external wall insulation is one of the most efficient ways to improve the energy efficiency in domestic properties. I’m looking forward to seeing the results and getting feedback from residents once the work has been completed later in the year.”
Fiona Hughes, Chief Executive of Solihull Community Housing, said:
“It’s great news that our residents on Alston Road will be able to benefit from this scheme. Installing external wall insulation is expensive, so we’re really pleased to be able to support residents and utilise the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund, in this instance, to improve energy efficiency. Once complete, I’m confident our residents will really start to notice the benefits.”
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