Thanet District Council has been awarded £4.3million following a successful bid for funding from the government’s Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund (SHDF).
The funding will allow extensive retrofit works to be undertaken to improve the energy efficiency of five of the district’s tower blocks.
The retrofit works will include installing replacement windows and more efficient heating systems. Work is expected to start in January 2024 and be completed by September 2025.
The upgrades will help to cut fuel bills for social housing tenants as well as delivering warm homes and reducing carbon emissions. Thanet council says the funding will also support around 9,000 jobs in the green energy sector and deliver carbon emissions savings equivalent to taking up to 6,000 cars off the road in any given year.
The funding will go towards a £21.9m programme of capital works at Staner Court, Invicta House, Kennedy House, Trove Court and Harbour Towers
The grant bid was discussed by councillors last December as part of a £40million project to reduce the carbon footprint of Thanet council homes by carrying out works to improve ratings on Energy Performance Certificates (EPCs), improve insulation and install heat pump technology.
The decarbonisation project is part of the council’s work to reach targets under The Climate Change Act, amended in 2019, which commits the UK to becoming ‘net zero’ by 2050.
The authority has £10 million for the works earmarked in its Housing Revenue Account but needed external funding to help pay for the programme for properties to be EPC grade C compliant by 2030 and net zero by 2050.
Bob Porter, Acting Director of Place at Thanet District Council, said: “The SHDF funding will allow us to make significant improvements to our housing stock, and tenants will benefit from warmer, more energy efficient homes, with lower energy costs. This is especially important when many of our residents are feeling the impact of the current cost of living increases and is an important step in helping us to achieve our goal of reaching Net Zero by 2030.”
In 2022, SHDF Wave 1 awarded 69 projects with funding worth £179million, to upgrade around 20,000 social housing properties which currently have Energy Performance Certificates (EPC) with a rating of C or below. The next wave of funding, SHDF Wave 2.1, will award £778million of grant funding to 107 projects across England.
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