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District Dispatch - 6 October 2022

We are so pleased with the response we have had from people since we launched our 'Supporting You' campaign in partnership with the Chichester Observer and Midhurst and Petworth Observer last week.

District dispatch 1

Cost of living pressures are affecting us all and so we want to make sure that people are accessing the help and support that is available - not just from us, but from a whole variety of organisations, charities and community groups.

This week, I thought it would be worth mentioning some of the grants that are available to install energy efficiency and renewable energy measures through the Warmer Homes programme. To qualify, a home must have an Energy Performance Certificate of E, F or G (with limited funding for EPC D rated properties). If you're not sure what your rating is, you can find your energy certificate on the Government's website. (opens new window). If your home has never had an EPC and you think it is likely to have a poor standard of energy efficiency, please contact Warmer Homes who may be able to arrange for an assessment to be done. In addition, your household income also has to be £30,000 or less, or you need to be in receipt of means-tested benefit.

Funding under the Warmer Homes programme is available until March 2023, for improved insulation; air source heat pumps; and solar PV panels. If your home is connected to the gas network, funding of up to £10,000 is available. If your home is not on the gas network, funding of up to £25,000 is available.

The Warmer Homes programme is available to both owner occupiers and private rental tenants. If you are a private rental tenant, your landlord will be required to make a financial contribution and give consent for the improvements. If you are a landlord, your tenant will be required to give consent for the improvement, and you will be required to make a financial contribution. If you are interested in finding out more, please visit the Warmer Homes website. (opens new window) or call 0800 038 5737.

There are also lots of other measures you can take to help cut household bills. The Energy Saving Trust (opens new window) has some great tips.

They also highlight that the average UK family with children throws away more than £700 of food every year. Not only does this mean that we are losing money, but food waste is also responsible for around 10% of harmful greenhouse gas emissions globally. We have provided some tips on cutting food waste on our help with household bills page and recipes designed for using up leftovers at Love Food Hate Waste. (opens new window)

There are even some mobile apps that can help. OIio (opens new window) provides a platform for you to share unwanted food and other items within your community or to pick up leftover goods from stores or catering suppliers for free. Foodcloud (opens new window) connects supermarkets with charities and community groups. Through the app, supermarkets can upload a description of unsold food and a local charity will get a notification to collect it. Nowaste (opens new window) allows you to scan receipts and barcodes, log your weekly shop, make lists of what you already have, plan meals and receive automatic reminders about when food items are going to expire. Finally, there is Too Good To Go (opens new window) which lets you buy and collect 'Magic Bags' filled with surplus food at a significantly reduced price from local businesses.

If you are struggling to pay for food, the Chichester District Food Bank (opens new window) is available to assist. You can also access affordable food, learn low-cost cooking, and find support through Community Food Hubs (opens new window), which take place in locations across the district. Just bring a bag and a suggested donation of £3.50 for a selection of groceries and rescued produce. 

Best wishes

Cllr Eileen Lintill

Leader of Chichester District Council