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District Dispatch - 23 April 2024

Over the past few months, we've been busy letting you know about the various grant schemes available to help you improve the energy efficiency of your home, cut your carbon footprint, and reduce your bills.

Councillor Jonathan Brown, Deputy Leader Chichester District Council and Cabinet Member for Environmental Strategy

If you've benefited from any of the home energy efficiency schemes that we've been promoting, our team would love to hear from you. For example, if you've used the Boiler Upgrade scheme to replace a gas boiler with an air source heat pump, or if you've been able to install solar panels or insulation with the help of a Warmer Homes grant, we're keen to hear about your experience. Please contact our team by emailing: climatechange@chichester.gov.uk

We know that the average household could be losing hundreds of pounds each year because their property isn't energy efficient, and so having access to these support schemes can make a huge difference to people.

I'm pleased to say that as of this month, many more of our residents are now able to apply for one of these schemes. The Home Upgrade grant scheme is for properties that do not use mains gas for heating and for those on a low household income or who are in receipt of means-tested benefits. The maximum income threshold for the grant has now been increased to £36,000 a year, expanding the eligible pool of households by nearly 20%. Through this scheme, eligible households are able to access energy saving measures such as free insulation, air source heat pumps and solar panels, until November this year.

You will be eligible for this scheme if your property is mainly heated by electricity (for example, storage heaters, electric boiler, and panel heaters); oil; coal; Liquid Petroleum Gas (LPG); or solid fuel, and has an Energy Performance Rating (EPC) of E, F or G. You can check your EPC rating on the Government's 'find energy certificate' page (opens new window).

Through this scheme, up to £38,000 is available per household, depending on the property type and the measures that are considered suitable for the property. It's worth mentioning that you can still apply for this scheme if you have a gas connection, as long as it's not used for heating — for example, if your home has a gas cooker but uses electric storage heaters.

To find out more about this scheme and to apply, visit the Warmer Homes website (opens new window). You can also call the freephone number: 0800 038 5737 or email: retrofit@warmerhomes.org.uk

If you're not eligible for this scheme, there are many other grants and support schemes available. We have created a handy leaflet that summarises all of the different schemes and you can download through this link (Word doc) [871KB] . If you're unsure what grant or grants you may be eligible for, the Citizens Advice Energy Team can help identify what support is available to you — they can be contacted on 0800 145 6879 or visit the Citizens Advice 'energy' page (opens new window).

The council is working with partners to promote some of the energy efficiency grants available, so it's worth mentioning that you may receive a letter through the post from our partners with information. If you want to check whether something is genuine, please contact us: climatechange@chichester.gov.uk

Further advice on energy efficiency and renewable energy measures and details on the range of different grants available for homeowners and landlords, can be found on our website on our Chichester District Council 'home energy efficiency' page.

With household bills at an all-time high, knowing how to save energy has never mattered more. Whether it's information on green heating, insulating your home, or investing in more energy efficient appliances, visit Energy Saving Trust's 'energy at home' page (opens new window) for advice and guidance.

Don't forget that our Supporting You team are also here to help if you're struggling to pay household bills, and they can be contacted by email on: supportingyou@chichester.gov.uk or by calling: 01243 534860.

Best Wishes

Cllr Jonathan Brown

Deputy Leader and Cabinet Member for Environmental Strategy at Chichester District Council