News Alert

Wondering how to further reduce your energy bills? Have a look at the HOBBS report for a few ideas.

Saturday, March 31, 2012

The HOBBS reports go live

As the Homes Behaving Badly project comes to an end, the suite of reports created as part of this project are now publicly available.

Click here to download the HOBBS Reports

(If you spot any errors, do tell us. We have found one so far.)

Sections 2 to 5 are specifically for householders, providing an introduction to energy efficiency in the home - from the free and low cost options to the medium and high cost options.

With separate sections devoted to houses of cavity wall construction, houses of solid wall construction and  rooms in the roof, there should be something useful here for a wide range of householders.

The case studies in Section 2 demonstrate the big savings that can be made through energy-saving habits and run-of-the-mill improvements to our homes.

For those who are interested, the case studies also illustrate what else can be done to turn an ordinary house into a low-energy home and how much effort and money might be required.

An overview of local housing stock and a summary of the HOBBS project as a whole can be found in Sections 6 and 7 of the HOBBS report.

We hope you find them useful!

Click here for Homes Behaving Badly final press release

Monday, March 26, 2012

HOBBS project draws to a close

The final event of the 'Homes Behaving Badly' series took place on Saturday 24th March when 36 people visited the site of an ultra-low energy refurbishment to see progress to date. So far, the roof is weather-tight and the external insulation has begun, but there's a bit of work to do on the extension still.

This open day was also part of Superhomes week - when all over the UK, Superhomes which have cut energy use and carbon emissions by at least 60% open their doors to visitors.

Tina and Richard talked about the house from the home-owner perspective, and Gil Schalom (the architect) and Sean (from Westville) shared their technical knowledge and experience.

Earlier in the week, another local Superhome in Radcliffe on Trent (also a HOBBS project case study) opened its doors to visitors. It was a friendly and informative visit according to those who took part, showing  solid wall insulation and other low energy solutions.

While the HOBBS open days and the workshops held earlier in March are now complete, this project will also have a lasting legacy in the form of the HOBBS reports. Detailed energy information was collected from 8 local houses to form a set of case studies showing what each house was like when the current occupants moved in, what efficiency improvements have been made so far, and what further work is intended. The impact on the energy bills for each house is included.

These reports and a film of the 1950's ultra-low energy refurbishment in progress will be posted here in the next week.

Thursday, March 22, 2012

HOBBS open house visit 24th March

Nottingham: Harrow Road
House Summary
Owner(s): Tina Holt and Richard Middup
House Type: 3 bed 1952 detached
Carbon saving: Predicted saving: 80%

Measures installed:


Planned PassivHaus renovation
180mm Phenolic board external insulation to all walls
Passivhaus certified triple glazing throughout
Loft insulation, uValue: 0.13W/(m2K)
300mm EPS floor insulation, uValue: 0.13W/(m2K)
Extensive air tightness work, ≤ 1.0 m3/h.m2 at 50 Pa
Whole house mechanical ventilation heat recovery system to be installed
Photo voltaic panels to be installed on south facing roof
Low energy lighting throughout
Low energy appliances throughout
Water saving devices to include; Low flush loo, low flow taps and shower.
Water butts for garden use.
Other energy efficiency implements to include; designed to include draught-lobbies: porch on front door, utility room for back door.

If you would like to book a place click here:
Visit to Tina and Richard's open house on Saturday 24th March

Thursday, March 15, 2012

SuperHomes Week set to inspire your eco makeover

Pioneering owners of some of the UK 's most energy efficient SuperHomes will be hosting free Open Days between Sat 17th - Sun 25th March. SuperHomes are older homes that have been refurbished for greater comfort, lower bills and reduced emissions (at least 60% less). Joining a tour will give you actionable ideas for greening your own home.

Georgian, Victorian, Edwardian and post-war houses are amongst the 65 renovated homes open to the public. Most have superior insulation; many have alternative heating sources and some produce their own energy. To find out more or to pre-book a place on a tour,

Several Nottingham SuperHomes will be holding Open Days during SuperHomes Week:

Tue 20 Mar 10am – 4pm

Sat 24 Mar 10am – 5pm

Tuesday, March 06, 2012

The first two Homes Behaving Badly workshops on Saturday 3rd March 2012 attracted an audience of home owners looking to make energy efficiency improvements to their own homes.

Tina Holt, Penney Poyzer and Gil Schalom ran the workshops, which started with the free ways to save energy. The audience were already saving a packet between them, with a host of money-saving tips like "using the hot tap with the shortest pipe run" or "only using hot water when really necessary".

For those who were looking to make free or very low cost improvements, Julie "Queen of Mean" told her story - and entertained the group with her humorous promotion of the low-tech solutions.

Great low cost options were discussed - bubble-wrap over north facing windows that are obscured anyway, plastic film over window panes (fix it on with double-sided tape and a hair-dryer), or the power of the humble curtain - with thermal lining or an older curtain behind for extra insulation.

Gil Schalom, green architect, gave information of a more technical nature, as the audience asked specific questions about their own homes and the issues they want to tackle.

Rushcliffe Borough Council's Energy Officer provided a stand and gave out information during the tea breaks, and Michael and Mo brought samples from their low energy refurbishment project and shared their experiences. At the same time, a short film of an ultra-insulated loft conversion (one of the case studies) ran in the background.

One person noted on the feedback form: "I thought I had a pretty good energy efficient house. Now I know there's a lot more I can do!"

The next 2 workshops on 10th March will focus on whole house retrofit (generally a higher cost option!) and on low and high cost ways to make attic rooms and loft conversions more energy efficient.

To book your place on a workshop or to visit the 3 Nottingham homes which will open their doors this March during SuperHomes Week, contact

To see details of these open SuperHomes, just search for Nottingham on the SuperHomes "Open Homes Events" list.