Westmorland and Furness Council Invests in Energy Efficient Homes

Renewable Heat Specialists RPS Group Hired to Improve over 100 Rural Homes

Westmorland and Furness Council has appointed renewables and heating specialist, Rothwell Plumbing Services Group (RPS Group), to deliver part of a multi-million-pound scheme of energy efficiency improvements to more than 100 homes in the area.

RPS Group, who have an established regional office in the Lake District, will be retrofitting homes using funding Westmorland and Furness Council has secured from the Home Upgrade Grant (HUG 2) scheme. Work begins on site this month and will see the first properties start to benefit from improvements.

The Home Upgrade Grant scheme is designed to deliver energy-saving improvements to some of the UK’s most fuel-impoverished privately owned and rented homes, many of which are in rural areas and are off the mains gas grid.

The type of improvements made will depend on the specific needs of individual properties and eligibility assessments for homes and residents but could include upgrades to both the heating system and the building itself.

Westmorland and Furness Council Interim Senior Manager for Housing Standards & Services, Amanda Yellowley, said:

Westmorland and Furness Council is pleased to lead on the HUG 2 scheme for Cumbria, working closely with Cumberland Council.

The scheme is now moving into the delivery phase, and we look forward to working in partnership with Rothwell Plumbing Services, Corelogic Ltd and our residents to deliver energy efficiency measures to homes across the Westmorland and Furness area. There are many homes across Cumbria in need of energy efficiency retrofit works which should help to reduce fuel poverty and help residents to save money on their energy bills and reduce their carbon footprint.

Graham Rothwell, RPS Group, Chief Executive, added:

Rural homes in places like Cumbria bring their own challenges when it comes to increasing energy efficiency. But it’s a specialism we excel in and one of the reasons we acquired our business serving residents across Cumbria a few years ago to be able to support more rural homes.

We are delighted to be working with Westmorland and Furness Council to help bring renewable and low-carbon solutions that will benefit landlords, residents and the environment.

Fuel poverty, where households regularly struggle to cover the cost of heat and energy, remains a significant problem across the UK but can be particularly challenging in rural areas where mains gas is often unavailable.

RPS Group can deliver a range of upgrades, including works to the building fabric such as improvements to wall, loft and floor insulation, as well as installing new low carbon heating systems, including air source heat pumps, as well as renewable electricity generation via solar panels and battery storage systems.

As well as being off the mains gas grid, eligible households must have an income of no more than £36,000 a year and their property must have an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of between D and G.

Homeowners and renters can check their eligibility and express an interest in accessing full funding via the council’s website www.westmorlandandfurness.gov.uk

Established 35 years ago in Wigan, Greater Manchester, RPS Group is an award-winning installer that specialises in renewables and heating installations, working with local authorities, housing associations and private developers across the North of England.