A Fartown retrofit housing scheme which replaced tenants’ gas boilers with greener heating measures has been shortlisted for a prestigious award.

Kirklees Council’s Abbey Road Retrofit scheme has been shortlisted in the Best Social Housing Category at the MJ Awards. The MJ Awards are competitive national awards that recognise excellence and innovation in council services.

The council’s Homes and Neighbourhoods team worked alongside tenants to design the project after listening to the impacts fuel poverty was having on their lives.

A total of eight existing council properties at Abbey Road were included in the project, and benefited from the following energy efficiency measures:

  • Heat pumps were installed. Gas boilers and cookers were removed ending reliance on fossil fuel
  • Loft insulation top up, cavity wall insulation and external wall insulation
  • New roofs were fitted and the chimneys dropped to remove a possible cold bridge
  • Triple glazed windows
  • Photovoltaic panels and solar thermal panels were installed to create renewable solar energy

The scheme exemplifies how the council can significantly reduce carbon emissions from buildings while tackling increasing fuel poverty by installing new systems designed for high energy efficiency.

It coincides with the council’s commitment to making Kirklees carbon neutral by 2038 and ensuring that the transition to net zero leaves no one behind.

David Shepherd, strategic director for growth and regeneration, said: “I’m delighted that the team’s hard work and dedication to deliver this innovative green scheme have been recognised at the MJ Awards.

“The Abbey Road scheme shows that existing housing can be redesigned to use renewable energy and energy-efficient insulation to reduce the carbon footprint of buildings.

“We are monitoring the performance of the green technologies installed to inform future schemes and help identify other homes in Kirklees that could benefit from retrofitting.”

Early estimates show that these green technologies have reduced these properties’ carbon emissions by 50% to 75%, saving tenants between £190 to £350 a year on their energy bills.