THE CEREDIGION COUNTY COUNCIL Area Renewal Team has been successful in securing £1.6 million from the Welsh Government’s Warm Homes Arbed Scheme for improving homes in the Teifi Ward, Cardigan and Llanarth.
The scheme supports Welsh Government’s commitments to reduce the impacts of climate change, help eradicate fuel poverty and boost economic development and regeneration in Wales. The scheme considers a whole house approach to home energy efficiency improvement and has helped to tackle harder to treat homes where the impact of fuel poverty tends to be most severe.
Councillor Rhodri Evans, Cabinet Member for Lifestyle Services and Waste said, “I am delighted that Ceredigion was successful in securing this significant level of funding for Cardigan and Llanarth. Residents within the county face daily challenges in living in draughty and energy inefficient homes which are costly to heat. The improvements under this scheme have made a substantial impact on the warmth and comfort of households within their homes along with a significant reduction in energy bills.”
Willmott Dixon was appointed as Main Contractor to deliver both schemes following the success of the Beeches, Llandysul scheme the previous year.
Both the Cardigan and Llanarth schemes targeted solid wall insulation, in the form of external wall insulation. This was installed on 109 properties between both schemes and provided a carbon saving of 1207 tCO₂. The external wall insulation insulates the walls which help to reduce heat loss in cold weather, resulting in much more comfortable living environment and a reduction in heating costs by up to as much as 40%. These improvements also reduce the risk of condensation and damp walls.
Citizens Advice Bureau (CAB) was appointed to undertake energy advice and guidance to householders who have received measures and others who lived within the area. Ymlaen Ceredigion provided behavioural change coaching specifically relating to energy efficiency to the CAB officers.
Under the scheme, CAB aimed to deliver energy advice and raise awareness of energy efficient measures in the home and support householders with advice that would increase household income and reduce expenditure. The scheme also aimed to improve the health and wellbeing of households.
The project’s success resulted in 9 clients receiving debt advice, 8 received housing advice, 2 clients received new heating systems as a part of the NEST programme. 68 clients received energy saving advice and benefited from savings of £35,575 and of the 51 clients, 92% had their income increased as a result of their advice.
The scheme focuses on the delivery of community benefits by using the local supply chain, and providing job growth and engaging with the communities and schools in the areas. As part of the contract with Willmott Dixon, Community Benefits was included in the contract. These community benefits included: apprenticeships and work experience, a play day with RAY Ceredigion in Llanarth, an open day and cash contribution towards the skateboard park in Cardigan, refurbishment of a snooker hall, including providing insulation, cash contribution towards materials for Maes Radley changing facilities and cash contributions for two further projects in Cardigan and Llanarth.