Friday, 27 June 2014

Planning Appeal allowed & Costs Awarded: Vicarage Lane, Elworth

This scheme for four new residential dwellings was recently granted planning permission, secured by cb3 design and in conjunction with Emery Planning Partnership town planning consultancy.

Vicarage Lane Site Plan
Vicarage Lane Scheme Site Plan

The site comprises a dilapidated timber church hall in a residential area of Elworth, Sandbach, South Cheshire and is surrounded by an eclectic mix of Edwardian terraces, detached and semi-detached houses and bungalows.

 The original scheme was recommended for approval by the Local Planning Authority but was refused by the Planning Committee in the face of officer support and pre-application advice. After a very brief appeal period the decision was overturned and permission was granted. The inspector’s report was critical of committee members stating that they had behaved unreasonably and that the Council had delayed a development which should have been permitted and that no substantive reason for refusal was given. A cost claim has been awarded in this instance, which whilst not fully reimbursing our client for the time, cost, delay and frustration, goes some small way to providing vindication for their efforts.

Thursday, 12 June 2014

Upgrading Homes

Low Carbon Lymm recently organised a research visit to Golden Gates Housing Association to gain some insight into the associations performance upgrades on a range of homes around Warrington.

The event was attended by a selection of organisations including ourselves, local residents & businesses, local landlords, and the neighbouring St.Helens Council.

The event included a tour of several recent upgrade projects to insulate older properties, to install solar thermal and solar PV panels.

A Golden Gates Housing Association property on the left upgraded with external wall insulation and solar PV, attached to a private resident property on the right who took up the offer to externally insulate as part of same works, minimising their costs.

These upgrades are giving tenants more comfortable homes to live in which can stay warmer for longer with drafts minimised, mechanical ventilation inserted to provide fresh air - pre-warmed through heat recovery - to kitchens and bathrooms. Voltage optimiser units have been installed to make the electricity coming into each property go further as most appliances do not use the full voltage coming in from either solar PV or a standard electrical supply from the street.

Heat recovery extractor fan example

A reduced demand for energy usage combined with the solar panels providing on site generation of hot water and electricity free of charge to tenants is helping to minimise bills whilst also providing the not for profit association with a feed-in tariff payback to fund future projects.

For advice on energy saving measures, The Energy Saving Trust and its partners offers impartial advice to householders and communities.