Thursday 17th January 2019 saw the CEO of Energy Saving Trust, Philip Sellwood, and Ofgem chairman, Martin Cave, attend the launch of the Sustainable Seacombe project at Seacombe Library in Wirral. They took part in the launch, giving speeches at the event hosted by the environmental charity, Energy Project Plus.
Sustainable Seacombe is funded by the Energy Industry Voluntary Redress Scheme (Energy Redress) and delivered by Energy Project Plus. The programme aims to deliver a very focused area-based energy advice programme in the Seacombe area on the Wirral. The project will go door-door across 7,700 homes as well as running community events and energy advice training across the area. It will see the installation of more than 1,000 LED lightbulbs, as well as providing direct energy advice to at least 1250 households, with 650 of those receiving in-home energy advice visits.
Success for an early applicant
Energy Project Plus was awarded over £62.8k to deliver Sustainable Seacombe in August 2018, as one of the first charities to successfully apply to the Energy Redress scheme. In partnership with Wirral Council, the project will tackle fuel poverty by supporting vulnerable residents to maintain adequate warmth in their home, while staying in control of their bills.
Peter Owen, Chief Executive of Energy Project Plus said ‘We have developed Sustainable Seacombe to bring direct financial and health benefits to residents in our local community and are extremely grateful to receive the funding to enable us to deliver our programme.’
Energy Saving Trust CEO, Philip Sellwood, delivered a speech at the launch which took place as part of the Wallasey Winter Warmer event. He highlighted the importance of local action on energy and the need for national initiatives like Energy Redress to enable real, measurable change to people’s lives. He said:
‘Local charities work day-to-day with the very people who most need support to keep their homes warm and safe and their energy bills affordable… Our guiding principle throughout has been to ensure the maximum impact from this funding at a time when resources are stretched… Sustainable Seacombe is a great example of this, working closely with local people and the council to find those most in need of help and get them the support they need.’
Energy Saving Trust and Energy Redress
Energy Saving Trust was appointed by Ofgem in April 2018 to deliver the Energy Redress Scheme, which distributes payments from energy companies who have breached rules. Funds can go towards projects across Great Britain, like Sustainable Seacombe, that provide support to vulnerable energy customers.
Having run two successful funding rounds to date – providing funding for 21 projects totalling over £2.4m – Energy Saving Trust announced a third round earlier this month, with another £500k of funding available to charities in England, Scotland and Wales.
In order to apply, charities need to demonstrate they are of good financial standing and can deliver effective projects for the benefit of householders.
Local authorities and other non-charitable organisations who wish to get involved can play a role by partnering with charities to deliver projects funded by the scheme, however only their charitable partner will be able to submit an application and be responsible for the funding and project delivery.
Other successful projects include:
- Wigan Community Energy Champions which supports hard to reach vulnerable residents in Wigan who do not currently engage in the existing affordable warmth service and welfare provisions. Using local volunteers, the project aims to breakdown the fears of vulnerable energy users and act as a link between front line services and the local community.
- Energy Skills for Life which engages with secondary school students and those who have recently begun living independently in order to equip them with a better understanding on how to manage energy use and costs
- Energy Shredders which works with attendees from Men’s Shed groups in North and South Lanarkshire to provide energy advice to people and empower them to educate the wider community.
For more information on Energy Redress, other projects funded under the scheme or to apply, please visit the website: www.energyredress.org.uk