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Grab a grant to keep warm now!

Herefordshire Council is urging county residents to take advantage of two government grants to help them keep their homes warm before the schemes come to an end later this year.

Under the government’s Carbon Emission Reduction Target, gas and electricity suppliers in the UK are obliged to help reduce carbon dioxide emissions from homes.

The current initiative is due to end in December this year and is likely to lead to an increase in the installation cost of several energy efficiency measures, such as loft insulation and cavity wall insulation.

“In Herefordshire nearly a third of people were living in fuel poverty back in 2008. It is likely that the number has gone up since then,” said Cllr Brian Wilcox, Herefordshire Council’s cabinet member for housing and planning.

“One of the big issues we face is the large number of properties which do not have adequate insulation.

“I know that many people have taken advantage of this scheme, but unfortunately there are many who haven't and it’s due to finish at the end of the year.  I would encourage anyone who can benefit from this scheme to take advantage of it now while they still can,” added Cllr Wilcox.

“As an example, insulation work which costs around £150 now could cost more than £500 if the same work was done without the help of a grant.”

Further information regarding the CERT programme can be obtained by contacting the Energy Saving Trust by telephone 0800 512 012 or via their website http://www.energysavingtrust.org.uk/england

Warm Front is a Central Government-funded grant scheme which will also come to an end this year.

“This grant allows vulnerable people, and those on low incomes, to obtain funding which will contribute to a range of energy efficiency measures, including heating systems,” added Cllr Wilcox.

“Warm Front can be contacted by telephone 0800 316 6011 and I would urge anyone contemplating the installation of heating to find out more to see if they qualify for this grant before it comes to an end.

“As a council, we also support the Home Heat Helpline which offers free and practical advice to help households to save money on domestic energy bills. People wanting advice should contact the Home Heat Helpline - 0800 33 66 99.

“In these financial constrained times, it’s good news that these grants are available from government, but  I would urge residents who feel they could benefit from either of them to find out more immediately, before the grants come to an end.”