Back in 2018, SBS delivered an innovative energy efficiency pilot scheme involving 108 occupied properties in Padiham, Lancashire. Carried out on behalf of Places for People (PfP), it was commissioned by DREEAM, a European funded demonstration project, and it was designed to test the theory that larger scale refurbishments deliver greater and more cost-effective energy savings than schemes involving single properties alone.
The scheme was such a success that PfP submitted it in the 24 Housing Awards 2019, which took place in October 2019 at the Ricoh Arena in Coventry. It was entered in the Best Green Scheme category and was duly announced as the winner.
As main contractor for the scheme, SBS was responsible for a range of energy efficiency measures, all contributing to a 75% energy reduction in the featured properties, and driving ultimately towards an nZEB (nearly Zero Energy Building) standard. Measures included fitting new external wall insulation, energy-efficient storage heaters, hot water cylinders, mixer showers and photovoltaic panels on the roofs. The scheme was designed to demonstrate a whole-house approach to the works.
The success of this scheme helped to underscore an argument set out last year in an independent government-commissioned report entitled "Understanding Best Practice in Deploying External Solid-Wall Insulation in the UK." The 96 page report was produced by University College London (UCL), Bartlett School Of Environment, Energy & Resources (BSEER), with support from Cambridge Architectural Research. It cites SBS as an exemplar of best practice and notes: "Mass deployment and roll-out of energy efficient retrofit through area-based approaches have been increasingly seen to be a key method to delivering high quality and cost-effective installations." (See article.)
As a result of the Padiham project, local families have been enjoying warmer, dryer living conditions and significantly reduced utility bills.
The scheme was also submitted by PfP for the CIH Northern Awards and, on 21st November, it was announced as the winner of the 'New Ideas, Approaches and Innovation' category. The awards took place at the Radisson Blu, in Durham.
The organisers note that "This award recognises the housing associations, local authorities and other housing providers that are pushing the envelope in terms of developing new ways to deliver housing services, or projects and initiatives that can demonstrate innovative uses of technology, or projects that have increased the adoption of technology, reducing digital inequality or exclusion."
In order to win, PfP had to demonstrate:
- That the project addressed a specific need or problem which has, using a new or creative approach, been appropriately met or solved.
- The ‘before and after’ scenario, demonstrating that the project was successfully implemented
- Improved outcomes for users
- Value for money
SBS would like to extend its congratulations to Places for People for two impressive results.