£1.4 million investment takes Cheltenham council houses towards a greener future

Council homes in Cheltenham are due to undergo major sustainability renovations as £1.4 million is awarded to Cheltenham Borough Council to improve and upgrade 180 of its housing association properties.

By Sarah Kent  |  Published
Council homes across Cheltenham are set to see major improvements thanks to funding for energy efficiency upgrades.

In a phased retrofit across Cheltenham borough, 180 council homes will receive energy efficiency upgrades, thanks to £1.4 million in funding from the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund and Cheltenham Borough Council's housing revenue account.

A total of 34 council homes in Hester's Way are already benefitting from the renovations, converting them into warmer, more affordable and energy efficient homes, with a further 25 homes in the Cumming Court complex in Prestbury due to be upgraded by March 2024.

The properties, which are managed by Cheltenham Borough Homes, have undergone significant improvements to the fabric of the houses including external wall insulation and loft insulation upgrades, taking their Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) ratings from D to C and decreasing their annual carbon emissions by around one third.

The houses in Cumming Court in Prestbury will be made much more energy efficient with ground source heat pumps; new ventilation systems to improve air quality and reduce potential damp and condensation; new double-glazed windows; cavity wall insulation to both internal and external walls; and upgrades to the loft insulation to reduce heat loss. And EPC ratings will rise from E to C, with a significant reduction in carbon emissions.

Communal areas at the Prestbury complex will be upgraded too, with new electrics; door entry; replacement windows, ceilings and flooring; and furniture and decoration for the communal lounge. 

Councillor Victoria Atherstone, Cheltenham Borough Council cabinet member for housing, said: 'It’s so important we improve homes to the best of our ability, making sure we’re successful in securing grants as and when they become available, to contribute to the hefty costs associated with the decarbonisation of homes.

'I am really pleased to see this significant investment already made to improve these homes, helping residents to benefit from improved comfort and thermal efficiencies all year round and lower energy bills. We know our customers are still concerned about their long-term financial futures due to the rising cost of living. This fabric-first retrofit approach will certainly go some way to addressing these concerns with regard to energy costs.'

CEO of Cheltenham Borough Homes, Steve Slater, said: 'I’d like to extend our thanks and gratitude to all the residents experiencing the retrofit works. We appreciate a refurbishment project of this scale is not an easy process and we’re thankful that so many residents at Cumming Court and in the Hester's Way area have been so positive throughout the works.

'We are delighted residents will benefit from the energy efficiency benefits introduced.'

As work continues into the new year, a further 30 homes in Hester's Way will be upgraded, followed by a further 40 homes in the Hatherley area, with a total of 180 homes being renovated.

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