News story published on 13 October 2015
Our ground breaking solar panel project has been recognised in the national 24 Housing Awards, winning the Best Green Scheme category.
The awards, presented by the national housing magazine, 24 Housing, celebrate the best the housing sector has to offer. We were up against stiff competition, but judges felt our project, which involved solar panels being installed on over 5,000 homes across Peterborough, had made the most substantial environmental improvements, as well as having a positive impact on the lives of residents.
The panels, installed in a partnership arrangement between Global Heat Source, Macquarie Lending and ourselves, is the biggest partnership of its kind in the country and is aimed at alleviating fuel poverty. It is funded by Macquarie investment bank with the solar panels being installed and maintained by Global Heat Source at zero cost to us or our tenants. The project will extract 13Mw of energy – just over 9,400 tonnes of CO2 each year from the running costs of our housing stock. It has been said that this is more of a saving than some large solar farms in the country!
The panels are also helping to reduce fuel bills for those tenants – saving households a potential £400 per year. This, combined with fuel poverty education work (helping residents to switch suppliers and heat their home more efficiently) is having a real impact on families’ finances.
We were also highly commended in the Best Apprenticeship category for our pre-apprenticeship scheme, which helps young people who are struggling to get into work. The scheme offering six months paid work experience and employment skills has enabled us to support over 80 young people offering them a fantastic opportunity to take their first steps towards a successful career path.
Chief Executive of CKH, Claire Higgins said: “It is wonderful to be recognised on a national stage for the work we do in improving the lives of the people of Peterborough. Both of these projects have had a huge impact on our communities, helping the environment and contributing to the local economy. Awards such as these help to make people aware of the amazing work housing associations do every day, and the value of that work to individuals and neighbourhoods across the country.”
James McLinden, Global Heat Source’s Managing Director, added “I am really pleased for everyone at Cross Keys Homes. This is one of the largest and most ambitious residential solar installations to be completed in England and tenants of Cross Keys Homes stand to benefit from reduced energy bills for years to come.”