Major energy work to transform Melville homes in Forth

Melville External wall houseMelville Housing Association customers in the South Lanarkshire town of Forth should see significant savings on their heating bills, following the announcement of a major energy efficiency project that will start this autumn.

The improvement work will see the homes receive external insulation and cladding, reducing damp, improving weatherproofing and vastly improving comfort levels, making them much cheaper to keep warm. It will also significantly reduce the environmental impact of the homes, saving more than 7,000 tonnes of carbon over the next 25 years.

Melville has teamed up with SERS Energy Solutions (Scotland) Ltd to deliver the work, which has been made possible thanks to grant funding of more than £200,000 from the Scottish Government’s HEEPS: Cashback for social housing providers scheme.

Free to Melville tenants, the improvement work is expected to take between four and six weeks per property. SERS will start their initial engagement work shortly with all work due to be completed by the spring.

Andrew Noble, chief executive of Melville Housing, said the project is “hugely significant”.

He added: “Fuel poverty is an increasing problem and for some time now we’ve been looking for a solution to the issues posed by our non-traditional properties, particularly those in Forth, which have the added difficulty of not being on the gas network. Thanks to this grant funding we now have a real opportunity to both extend the lives of these homes as well as help improve living conditions for our customers in Forth.”

Similar work has already been carried out on hundreds of Melville homes in Midlothian and feedback has been overwhelmingly positive. Tenants have reported significant increases in their comfort along with reductions in energy bills.

More than 600 of Melville’s 1,960 properties were built using non-traditional methods. They present significant modernisation challenges as there is no cavity to fill and the construction materials provide poor heat retention. External wall insulation brings these homes up to similar energy standards to those which have already benefited from conventional insulation measures such as cavity wall insulation.

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