Blairgowrie HEAT Project awarded nearly £250,000 from Energy Redress Scheme
The HEAT Project, part of Blairgowrie and Rattray Development Trust (BRDT), has been awarded £245,539 over two years from Ofgem’s Energy Redress Scheme.
The funding will enable the team behind the HEAT Project to continue to provide a free energy advice service to households in Perth and Kinross.
Established in 2017 following an initial idea from the Blairgowrie, Rattray and District Climate Café, the community-based HEAT Project has provided free, impartial and professional energy advice to over 3000 households, helping people in Perthshire save an average of 15-20 per cent on their energy bills and become more energy efficient at the same time.
Welcoming the funding announcement, HEAT Project manager, Martin Mathers, said: “The HEAT Project provides a vital energy advice service for worried consumers throughout Perth and Kinross.
“Thanks to a previous funding award from the Energy Redress Scheme, we helped over 500 households in the region successfully apply for grants or get free insulation installed, reducing energy use and costs, between May 2021 and April 2023.
“We also helped 132 households to pay off more than £73,000 of energy debt through The Scottish Home Heating Support Fund during the energy price crisis and the cost of living crisis.
“This new funding will allow us to continue and expand our service at a time when there is still significant demand for the advice we offer.”
Teresa Donaldson, chair of BRDT, added: “We know that the cost of living crisis continues to be a serious concern for many households in the area, and with household energy prices due to increase again by five per cent in January, the advice and support that we can offer local residents can make a huge difference to people’s lives.
“Perth and Kinross Council estimates that upwards of 60 per cent of households are experiencing fuel poverty with extreme fuel poverty at 40 per cent.
“Thanks to this funding from the Energy Redress Scheme, The HEAT Project will continue its efforts to help households reduce their energy bills and energy consumption.”
The HEAT Project works in partnership with Perth and Kinross Council’s Wellbeing Team, CAB Perth, SCARF, Home Energy Scotland and a number of local community groups including Letham4All, Broke Not Broken, the BARI Food and Refill Store, Buttons and Bows, and traveller groups to reach households most in need in the region.
Through collaboration with Perth and Kinross Council Climate Action team, and with organisations such as the Climate Cafes in Blairgowrie and Rattray, Birnam and Dunkeld, and Pitlochry, the HEAT Project also provides a number of climate talks and workshops.