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Warm and sustainable homes

Published on 13 December 2021

Warm and sustainable homes

A Cumbrian Sustainable Warmth consortium of district councils - that aims to address fuel poverty, improve energy efficiency and carbon savings - has received £19,955,000 funding from the UK Government.

The application for the Sustainable Warmth Competition, was submitted on the consortium’s behalf by Carlisle City Council earlier this year.

Made up of all the district authorities in Cumbria, the successful application was announced yesterday (8 December 2021).

The funding aims to boost the local economy to retrofit a target of 1,310, mainly private sector homes, with energy efficiency measures, including low-carbon heating across Cumbria.

Carlisle City Council bid for £5,850,000 for a target of 600 homes with mains gas heating and £14,105,000 for 710 homes with non-gas heating across Cumbria.

Carlisle City Cllr Paul Nedved, Portfolio holder for Economy, Enterprise and Housing, said:

“This is great news for Carlisle and Cumbria. The funding will provide much needed support for housing to make it more energy efficient and provide low-carbon heating across Cumbria. It’ll support local residents and also provide a welcome boost to the local economy. Thanks to all partners for their support.”

The primary purpose of the Sustainable Warmth competition is to raise the energy efficiency rating of low income and low Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rated households (those with E, F or G, and a limited percentage of homes with an EPC rating as D). This is expected to result in the following outcomes: 

  • Tackle fuel poverty by increasing low-income households’ energy efficiency rating while reducing their energy bills.  
  • Deliver cost effective carbon savings to carbon budgets and progress towards the UK’s target for net zero by 2050.
  • Support clean growth and ensure homes are thermally comfortable, efficient, and well-adapted to climate change.   
  • Support economic resilience and a green recovery in response to the economic impacts of Covid-19 and create jobs.
  • Learn from the delivery experience to inform the development and design of further energy efficiency and heat schemes.

Owner occupied homes can receive up to £10,000 or £25,000 per household depending on the current efficiency of their homes. It is expected that work to owner occupier homes with be fully funded at no cost to the homeowner. Privately rented properties are eligible for funding of up to £5,000 or up to two thirds of the cost of the measures. To be eligible a household must have an annual income of less than £30,000, with larger thresholds for households with three or more members.

Now that funding has been confirmed, work will get underway in readiness for the scheme going live for applications in early 2022. It will be managed by Homelife Carlisle, a Home Improvement Agency, provided by Carlisle City Council.

The scheme includes FREE energy efficient measures, such as:

  • External wall insulation.
  • Internal wall and room in roof insulation.
  • Air source heat pumps (Low Carbon Heating).
  • Ground source heat pumps.
  • Solar PV.
  • Cavity wall, underfloor and loft insulation.
  • Smarter heating controls.
  • Single to double glazing.

The Sustainable Warmth competition encompasses two schemes:

Local Authority Delivery Phase 3 (LAD3): LAD3 has a refined scope to support low-income households heated by mains gas. The maximum grant per owner occupied home is £10K.

Home Upgrade Grant Phase 1 (HUG1): Scheme for low-income households with homes off-gas grid. The amount per home can be up to a maximum of £25K depending on the EPC rating and fuel type. Targeted funding will support the installation of multiple measures in these homes, which can face higher upgrade costs, to substantially improve their energy performance.


Background on Homelife Carlisle:

Homelife Carlisle is a Home Improvement Agency, provided by Carlisle City Council. Accredited by Foundations and set up in 2013, they help people maintain their home and carry out repairs, major works and adaptations. Their key aim is to help people remain independent and warm, safe and well at home. More information can be found on their webpage

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