News Alert

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

Thursday, August 30, 2012

What to do this weekend?

Just in case you are wondering what to do this weekend (or the next few!)....

There is plenty going on. Over on Transition West Bridgford's blog, there is information about the Small is.... Festival. (Never heard of it - have a look!)

If reducing energy use in the home is on your mind as autumn approaches, or you are just curious about low energy homes, then scroll down this blog for open house events in September.

Tuesday, August 21, 2012

Aiming for EnerPHit

In line with Superhomes week in September, we've decided to put some local case studies of low energy homes on the blog, some of which will open their doors to interested visitors (see previous posts)

Kate and Geoff's house in Derby is likely to become a Superhome very soon. This house is currently being refurbished to EnerPHit (the Passivhaus refurbishment standard).

This 1950s detached house is East-West facing and has been extended at some point to give 5 bedrooms, and a 1980s single storey extension. 

The refurbishment work includes insulation under floors, a "warm roof", external wall insulation (and some cavity wall insulation - rather odd original construction to say the least).

The work also includes Passivhaus-suitable triple glazing, a new boiler but some old radiators retained, lots
of water saving improvements, a recycled solar PV system, a tank suitable for adding solar hot water in the future, big fruit and vegetable plots, and ex-battery chickens!

Open house visits in September

Several local homes which have been built or refurbished to use less energy will be opening their doors during September to interested visitors. Visit and ask any questions you like.

Keep an eye on the website as additional houses and other details may be added in the next few days:

1st September
• 1950's ultra-low energy refurbishment (passivhaus) in Derby.
There will be a tour from 10.30am to noon and a later one from 1pm if numbers require a second tour.
(Child-friendly arrangements are possible here - just ask for details).

8th September
• Penney and Gil's 1890's house (now very low energy indeed) in West Bridgford
There will be a tour from 11.30am and 1.30pm,

Edwardian home in Carlton - book your visit on 8th or 9th September via the Superhomes website: (

15th September
• David Hill's zero carbon barn conversion in East Leake (superinsulated, renewable technologies and now an electric car)
There will be a tour from 2pm,

16th September (10 mins walk between these two)
1950's ultra-low energy refurbishment (passivhaus) in West Bridgford
• Website (
There will be a tour from 2pm and a later one from 3.30pm,

2000's house with cutting edge renewable technologies in West Bridgford, and a ultra-insulated extension under construction
• Website  (
There will be a tour from 2pm and a later one from 3.30pm.

Unless indicated otherwise, contact 
for more details or to book your place.

Thursday, August 16, 2012

Green Guardians Awards

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust Green Guardians Awards - chance to win cash prize and recognition.

The 2012 Green Guardian Awards are now open for nominations -

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust says:
"Businesses, community groups, schools and individuals have the chance of winning £1,000 prize and the desirable title of Green Guardian. There are several categories but people don’t have to select a category, if they just tell us about them and the work they have been doing we can put it into the category that is most suitable. The closing date for applications is 1st October 2012."

The categories are: 
  • Environmentalist of the Year
    • Recognising an individual who has shown outstanding commitment to enhancing or protect the local environment.
  • Environmental Community of the Year
    • Recognising the achievements of a group in improving their local environment.
  • Education and the Environment Award
    • Recognising the work of schools, colleges and other educational establishments in developing projects or initiatives that improve either their immediate surroundings or champion environmental education.
  • Coping with Climate Change Award
    • Designed to recognise efforts to encourage sustainable lifestyles and limit the negative impact of climate change. Shortlisted projects in all categories will be considered for this award.
  • Protecting the Environment through Innovation
    • Recognising projects from across all sectors that seek to tackle environmental issues through the use of innovation – whether in terms of new technologies, new ideas or through taking a creative approach to community engagement.
  • First Steps to Sustainability Award
    • Designed to recognise new green initiatives which have already made an impact and demonstrate significant potential for the future.
  • Environmental Business Award
    • Recognising the contribution businesses can make to sustainability through changes to business practice or through support for community based environmental initiatives.

Nottinghamshire Wildlife Trust is the leading wildlife conservation charity working to protect and enhance the wildlife and habitats of Nottinghamshire by managing nature reserves, engaging, advising, inspiring and educating people to create a richer natural world for present and future generations.

Friday, August 03, 2012

The Energy Bill Revolution

Ok, so August is not the obvious time to be thinking about fuel poverty and rising fuel bills, but the Energy Bill Revolution alliance is gaining momentum, with the support of concerned individuals and a diverse range of well known organisations and charities.

Whether you are worried about your own fuel bills or the growing numbers of people falling into fuel poverty, you may be interested to read more about this campaign, and perhaps to register your support:

The government's current plans to encourage household energy efficiency (the Green Deal and the ECO) look likely to fall short of the kind of step change needed to reverse the increasing occurrence of fuel poverty in the UK. On top of that, the Department of Energy and Climate Change anticipates energy shortages in the UK by 2015 - although the risk could be reduced if substantial improvements in energy efficiency are achieved.

If you are hoping to reduce your energy bills through home improvements in the next year, keep an eye on this blog, or email to receive local (East Midlands) updates by email.