Baxi Megaflo HE boiler and Megaflo solar cylinder part of Huntingdon Green House project

07/11/2010 Huntingdon green house project

A Baxi Megaflo HE boiler and Megaflo solar cylinder have been installed as part of Huntingdon District Council's Green House project. The green houses in St Ives and St Neots were officially opened on Friday 29 October 2010 by the Chairman of the Council, Councillor Jeff Dutton.

Huntingdonshire District Council teamed up with the Building Research Establishment (BRE) as part of their 'Rethinking Refurbishment' campaign; to demonstrate how typical family homes can be refurbished affordably while being kinder to the environment and reducing their energy bills.

At the official launch councillors, partners and officers and others who have played an important role in the development of the Green House Project, toured the houses to discover their transformation into environmentally friendly eco-homes.

The houses will be opening their doors to residents, home owners, businesses and traders from 6 November. A series of open days have been planned where visitors will receive practical and inspiring ideas on how to make their own homes warmer, brighter and cheaper to run whilst reducing their impact on the environment.

The open days will provide an opportunity to see an air source heat pump, solar hot water panels, learn more about the building energy management system, which allows remote adjustment to the heating while maximising efficiency and explore the sustainable gardens which cater for a diverse range of wildlife. Children, and the young at heart, can explore the houses by following the eco treasure hunt. Megaflo boiler

In order to achieve high environmental standards the council, along with contractors Apollo Housing, concentrated on improving the building fabric and reducing the carbon emissions by using a variety of insulation techniques, installing efficient heating systems, renewable energy technologies and water efficiency measures.

The project is the only one of its kind in the region. Both properties have gained 'Super Home' status by the Sustainable Energy Academy (SEA) and have become part of the network for Super Homes across the UK.

Both properties are typically representative of homes across the district in their age and construction. The St Neots property, a 1970s three bedroom semi-detached house, demonstrates improvements that can be made to existing properties for a relatively modest financial outlay, with no major structural improvements.

The St Ives property, a 1960s two bedroom detached house has undergone sustainable refurbishment, along with a replacement single storey extension at the back and a two storey extension on the side, creating extra living space, an additional bedroom and an integral garage. The St Ives property, being larger, will be used as the main showcase and will demonstrate additional features such as a green roof, rain water harvesting and triple glazed windows.

The houses were designed around four themes, energy efficiency, renewable energy, water efficiency and biodiversity, supporting the council's environmental objectives. They have numerous products and services, donated by a number of sponsors.

The St Ives property will be used as a local Energy Saving Trust satellite advice centre, providing information, home energy checks, and advice on grant assistance, renewable technologies and feed-in-tariffs.Megaflo cylinder

Other partners on the project include Ridgeons, who have not only been a key supplier but have been instrumental in securing sponsorship and technologies from companies wishing to demonstrate their products.

Councillor Jonathan Gray, whose executive responsibilities include environment said: "The houses are an essential demonstration and educational resource for all. Taking steps to maximise the efficiency of our homes is not only a responsible use of our natural resources but also saves money in reduced utility bills. If you would like to see the transformation and learn all about the environmental improvements you could make to your home or business I would encourage you to book a visit, we want you to be inspired to do it yourself."

Further details can be found at www.greenhouseproject.co.uk

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