£500 help for Ribble Valley homes to get renewable energy

Sunny side up: Read householder Tony Seaford is pictured (left) with Coun. Stuart Hirst, chairman of Ribble Valley Borough Council's health and housing committee.

Sunny side up: Read householder Tony Seaford is pictured (left) with Coun. Stuart Hirst, chairman of Ribble Valley Borough Council's health and housing committee.

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UP to £500 is available to help Ribble Valley households install renewable energy systems.

Households with the council tax band A to F in areas where there is no mains gas supply can claim the cash for the installation of renewable energy, such as solar heating panels and domestic wind turbines.

Coun. Stuart Hirst, chairman of Ribble Valley Borough Council’s health and housing committee, said: “Over half of the properties in Ribble Valley have no gas supply and are dependent on unregulated sources of fuel, such as oil or coal, to heat their homes. But modern technology has progressed to the point where we can now abstract heat from the ground and air, and warm water using natural light.

“The council is committed to helping residents make the switch to renewable energy, which is environmentally friendly and free!””

Read householder Tony Seaford installed solar panels for hot water four years ago and they have proved so effective he has now installed more to fuel his whole house.

“The hot water panels are so effective they will pay for themselves in five years,” said Tony. “I have now installed further panels and as a result am using 40% less gas, and selling electricity back to the national grid. Solar panels are a no-brainer and should be incorporated into the specifications of all new buildings.”

Former engineer Tony said even in bad weather the panels generated energy, resulting in savings on domestic fuel bills of around £400 a year.

Applications for the grants must be made by March 31st and details are available from council housing officer John Barber, on 01200 413235.