Aster Group to invest an additional £1m in homes across South West England to help reduce energy bills

Local housing association Aster Group has been awarded £530,000 to improve the energy efficiency of just over 100 of its customers’ homes in Dorset, Somerset and Wiltshire. The funding is part of the government’s Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund Wave 2 and will be matched by Aster, providing £1.1m for the works overall.

The money will be used to improve the fabric of the homes, including the installation of roof, cavity, and external wall insulation, more efficient windows and solar photovoltaic panels. The upgrades will help to lower energy bills by keeping the homes warmer in winter and cooler in summer, providing an Energy Performance Certificate (EPC) rating of C as a minimum.

Aster received the money along with a consortium of 11 other Registered Providers operating in the South West, after submitting a joint application for £24.8 million of funding via the South West Net Zero Hub, which is managed by the West of England Authority. Around 1,000 social homes in the region will benefit from the improvements to boost energy efficiency thanks to the success of the joint bid.

Commenting on the funding Adam Hackett, Aster Group transformation director – sustainability, said: “Our ambition is to have every one of our customers’ homes receiving an EPC rating of C or above by 2030, and to reach net zero by 2050.

“This funding will build on our existing significant investment programme by providing measures that really matter to our customers. It will kick-start our retrofit programme, enabling us to invest in 103 homes across our region to make them more energy efficient, thereby helping to reduce carbon and our customers’ heating bills in the longer term.”

The Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund forms part of the government’s commitment to reduce overall UK energy demand by 15% by 2030, as well as supporting the ambition for the UK to move towards greater energy independence.

Lord Callanan, Minister for Energy Efficiency and Green Finance, said: “This investment will help thousands of households to heat their homes for less, keep them warm for longer and could save hundreds on their annual energy bill.

“The green energy sector is growing, and this funding will support green jobs and provide the training needed to deliver these vital upgrades to homes.”

Jon Rattenbury, Programme Manager for the South West Net Zero Hub, said: “This is fantastic news for households in the South West and it takes us a step closer to achieving the region’s net zero targets. We look forward to working with our partners to deliver sustainable home upgrades that will make homes warmer and address fuel poverty.”

Back to latest news listings