South Lakeland villages embrace energy scheme
21 February 2019
Carbon conscious communities in South Lakeland have tapped into free expert advice as part of a low carbon energy project.
Cumbria Action for Sustainability (CAfS) has worked with seven communities since July of last year to improve the energy efficiency of buildings and explore renewable energy schemes, thanks to funding from ourselves.
The initiative has given rural places such as Finsthwaite the opportunity to undertake an energy audit of their village hall to identify low carbon changes that can be made.
Chairman of Finsthwaite and Lakeside village hall, Vanessa Champion, said: “This year’s energy audit has enabled us to explore the viability of installing a renewable energy system at the hall and identified lighting and heating improvements.”
The funding has also enabled CAfS to continue supporting communities that have received guidance on low carbon energy projects in the past.
Vanessa continued: “A previous energy audit undertaken led to the installation of a new heating system in the village hall.
“This improved comfort levels for hall users, significantly reduced our carbon emissions and allowed us to enhance our offering to customers, resulting in increased usage.”
Other communities that have made use of the free expert guidance include Staveley, Burton-in-Kendal, Colthouse, Colton, Burneside and Ulverston.
A spokesperson for CAfS, said: “This programme has enabled CAfS to support communities in making changes to reduce the carbon footprint of their communities and cherished community buildings, and have a positive impact on climate change.”
As well as this, the funding has allowed CAfS to run a programme of events focusing on different aspects of low carbon energy that are relevant to communities in South Lakeland, with hundreds of people attending events over the past 12 months.
The programme included an electric vehicle conference held at County Hall, Kendal in October and an evening with inspirational speaker Garry Charnock - the initiator and driving force behind Ashton Hayes going carbon neutral - amongst many other events.
Councillor Dyan Jones, our environment portfolio holder, added: “We are delighted to work in partnership with CAfS to help local communities across the district reduce carbon emissions and save money through the delivery of these low carbon energy schemes.
“This council is committed in working with organisations, communities and residents to help tackle climate change, to protect our area’s outstanding environment and the lives of people in South Lakeland.”
More information on the work of CAfS, including advice and support on low carbon energy changes.
Cllr Dyan Jones (left) with Vanessa Champion (second right) and Dr Rhona Pringle (right) from CAfS at Finsthwaite and Lakeside village hall.