Being Green in Oldham

37  FCHO BGreenFirst Choice Homes Oldham (FCHO) and partners have launched a £10 million ECO scheme in central Oldham, with a further £11 million of investment in properties and the environment.

The B Green project is a partnership between FCHO, Oldham Council, British Gas, Forrest and Savills, to install energy efficiency improvements for approximately 2,400 residents in Oldham.

Cath Green, chief executive, FCHO; Michele Carr, assistant executive director, neighbourhoods, housing and planning, Oldham Council; Mark Parker, operations director, Forrest; Lee McCarren, chief executive, Forrest; and Maria O’Brien, B Green project manager, FCHO launched the scheme by planting a commemorative flower bed in the shape of the scheme logo on Oldham Edge.

The work will see 1,400 homes in central Oldham (St Mary’s, Barker Street, Coldhurst, Burnley Street and Egerton Street) benefit from the installation of bio-mass district heating from a new energy centre, with 600 also being fitted with external wall insulation.

The scheme has attracted over £10m of ECO funding due to the carbon emissions saved by switching to efficient biomass boilers and external wall insulation improvements. The other £11 million is from FCHO to fund further improvements.

The insulation, being installed by Forrest, will make the buildings more thermally efficient, meaning that residents can enjoy warmer homes. The installation of the efficient bio-mass heating, being carried out by Econergy, will provide customers with a much higher degree of control over their individual heating needs.

FCHO’s £11 million investment will bring additional improvements in the area including kitchens, bathrooms, electrical works, external works, communal stairwells and environmental works.

The B Green project will see a number of local people employed, helping to generate new jobs in the local area in a range of roles from resident liaison work to construction.

Cath Green, Chief Executive at First Choice Homes, said: “This project is about giving customers more control over their individual heating, and helping to make customers’ fuel pound go further, thereby helping to reduce fuel poverty across the borough. The project will also create apprenticeship opportunities and so will benefit the wider local community.“

Claire Williams, from British Gas, said: “Over the next two years, we will make energy efficiency accessible to almost 1,400 homes throughout Oldham. This scheme will have a significant positive impact on residents across the area, allowing them to enjoy a comfortable and warm home whilst also making energy bills more manageable.”