100 home energy visits were carried out as part of the Penkside Project. These have made a real difference to families - saving energy, reducing bills, tackling fuel poverty, arranging referrals to other agencies and services.
Here are two of their stories
Due to illness in the family Mrs P had built up a number of debts, council tax and gas and electric bills. Whilst doing a home visit Beat the Cold helped out big time. They gave lots of advice on ways to save energy (such as closing the curtains at dusk, only boiling what you need in the kettle and improving insulation etc). They updated the pre-payment meter and then applied to Npower’s Energy Trust Fund for help. The Trust may be able to help people with domestic energy debts and in certain exceptional circumstances can help to clear other priority debts and purchase essential household items such as a refrigerator or cooker. In Mrs P’s case, the Trust was able to pay off £350 of the outstanding gas and electricity bills, and paid off £470 owed on council tax. This was a massive relief for a family who already had big worries on their plate.
If you wish to contact the Energy Trust Fund, write to:
A young man who is registered disabled, moved into a flat in the area. He had been paying £10/week to pay for electricity throughout the summer. Beat the Cold made a home energy visit and discovered that the Economy 7 system was not set up correctly and loads of water was being heated up continuously when it wasn’t needed. Beat the Cold reset the hot water programme, advised on how the storage heaters worked and also helped register Mr M on the Priority Services Register, which gives access to a range of benefits and advice about energy bills, metering and other help. His energy bill has been reduced by around half.