11 June 2013

ECO trial underway in Exeter

Exeter City Council received its first enquiries from local people interested in its Affordable Warmth pilot scheme yesterday (Monday 10th June).

Exeter City Council

The ‘ECO Trial’ runs for three months and will enable the council to better plan a long-term scheme that is expected to start in the autumn. The customer care team at J&J Crump in Newton Abbot will be arranging appointments for surveyors shortly. I will update you with developments in this pilot scheme over the next few weeks and months.

Measures on offer are:

  • loft insulation
  • cavity wall insulation (including hard-to-treat cavities)
  • boiler repair
  • boiler replacement
  • hot water cylinder jackets
  • draught stripping of front door & letterbox

These measures will be provided FREE of charge to most customers thanks to funding from an energy company. For example, a customer in receipt of certain income-related benefits (HHCRO-eligible) could benefit from all of these measures, whilst anyone living in or close to a low-income area (CSCO eligible) could get free insulation. Although this is an ‘affordable warmth’ trial Exeter City Council is keen to ensure that as many people as possible can benefit. So, if someone is not HHCRO-eligible and does not live in a CSCO area they too can improve the energy efficiency of their home; for example, those living in blocks of flats of three storeys or more can have free cavity wall insulation, regardless of income, tenure or other circumstances.

CSCO areas in Exeter map

The six areas outlined in dark red are CSCO areas in Exeter. People living in all six areas should receive a letter from the council in the next three weeks encouraging them to take advantage of the heating and insulation measures on offer.

The first tranche of 1,000 letters was delivered at the end of last week, with two further tranches of 1,000 each to be mailed later this week and again next week. This will complete the first phase of the trial in six ‘CSCO’ areas in the city. CSCO is the carbon saving communities obligation, which is intended to benefit people living in low-income areas, but our funding ‘pot’ will cover all aspects of the Energy Company Obligation – HHCRO, CSCO and CERO.

Exeter City Council are undertaking the trial for a number of reasons, not least of all to prepare for a long-term scheme that is expected to run from this September for a period of five years. They are expecting to gain answers to key questions like, what conversion rate can we expect, what proportion of boiler jobs will involve repair rather than replacement, what improvements in energy (SAP) rating can we expect, what customer care issues arise – and how can they be resolved, and how can we best blend funding from the various ECO ‘pots’ to get the best result for the customer.

For more information about the trial or to set up a trial in your area, contact Colin Anderson on 07738 423769 or

  • CERO, CSCO, ECO, ECO trials, HHCRO,


Leave a Reply