This episode is about being warm. At home. Where we spend a lot of our time. Yes, it’s about the good old insulation trick, i.e. putting a jumper on your home, rather than on yourself. This episode is about retrofit, its benefits for householders and the difficulties (and nifty ideas) that arise when trying to scale that up across different building types and tenures. Join us as we hit home in Oldham and learn from local householders, crafts people and other brilliant experts.
Artwork by Roy McCarthy
So retrofit – in this context retrospectively making existing buildings more energy efficient – is of course our bread and butter at Carbon Coop, not because it is a money maker (it ain’t!) but because we know both how much impact it can have for people and planet. Homes account for 17% of UK carbon emissions, mainly through heating. So if we insulate homes well we need to heat them less and can avoid large amounts of carbon emissions. But of course the side effect is warmer homes, lower bills and better health, both mental and physical. It’s a no-brainer, isn’t it? This episode gives a bit of an insight into what might be difficult about having that jumper cover the whole of Oldham and how we can get through those difficulties using our hearts and minds.
Image: Brandon Denny
Ibrahim Hoque from the Millennium Centre in Westwood invites us into the workshops they run with local residents to help them make those changes necessary to lower bills and improve comfort and construction workers Mark and Orianne from B4Box give us insight into the craft of retrofit and why quality is so important for the health of the building and the people inhabiting it. We hear from Clare at Onward about collaboration in the social housing sector to make more retrofit happen and we learn from Jonathan from Carbon Coop and Aileen from B4Box about the importance of doing retrofit programme’s at community level, touching on the value of fairness, neighbourly support and good partnerships between all the stakeholders. Oh and we have a new episode producer of course! Alex from Carbon Coop chats with host Britt about small solutions and big ideas.
Image: Brandon Denny
Image: Oldham Community Power
Power in the City is produced by Carbon Coop.
This episode was written and produced by Alex King.
Host: Britt Jurgensen
Local research & interviews: Melissa Kelly Shore
Sound design & post production: Barry Han
Power in the City is funded by the Electricity North West Powering our Communities Fund, ICLEI Action Fund and UCL Grand Challenges.
Image: B4Box team
Find out more
Local advice and support
Warm Homes Oldham – Council support and referrals
OBA Millennium Centre Oldham – Coldhurst
Greater Manchester support links
Groundwork Green Doctors – Greater Manchester wide
If you rent from a social housing provider contact your neighbourhood officer or engagement team.
If you live in Cumbria – Cold to Cosy Homes
If you live in Liverpool – Healthy Homes Liverpool
Or in Liverpool City Region – Housing Energy Efficiency
Helpful guides to understand energy efficiency measures, including DIY solutions
Cumbria Action for Sustainability guides
Centre for Sustainable Energy online resources
South Seed community group resources
The bigger picture
Case studies social housing excellence and collaboration
Zero Carbon Britain Hub Future Scenario
Carbon Brief – impartial information on climate change and policy
Friends of the earth