Through Hitting the Cold Spots, Hampshire County Council and the Environment Centre (tEC) have been helping eligible households with the cost of installing first-time central heating. Read Brian and Jane’s stories below, to find out what a difference this has made to their lives.
Brian had a brand new central heating system and shower installed with help from Hitting the Cold Spots.
A friend contacted us on Brian’s behalf when he became aware that Brian had been having to cope without any heating or hot water ever since his gas fire had failed and his gas supply had to be cut off for safety reasons. Living on a tight budget, Brian was unable to pay for the necessary repairs himself.
An advisor from the Environment Centre visited Brian and helped him to apply for a grant from the Central Heating Fund. They also approached another local charity which kindly offered additional help with the cost of the work that was needed, meaning that Brian didn’t need to worry about paying a contribution himself.
Brian had his gas supply reconnected and central heating was installed in his home, including a boiler, radiators and a new shower with instant hot water.
“This has been a life changing experience for me. Before I had this help I was using a camping stove for my cooking and my only hot water came from boiling a kettle. Now I have a fully working, modern central heating system and hot water on demand.”
Jane from Gosport had help from Hitting the Cold Spots to install a brand new boiler and radiators in her home.
Recently widowed and suffering from several health difficulties, Jane was becoming increasingly concerned about spending another winter in her home with no central heating. She approached her local council who put her in touch with us at the Environment Centre.
After visiting Jane in her home to complete an assessment and find out more about her needs, we could confirm that she was eligible for a Central Heating Fund grant. In Jane’s case, we were also able to join forces with other grant-giving organisations so that the heating was installed without costing Jane a single penny.
We helped Jane through the whole process; accompanying her when visits from heating engineers took place, discussing all the options with her, liaising with the engineers on her behalf, and finally helping her to learn how to use the controls for her new heating.
Jane is now looking forward to a warm and cosy winter, and is even starting to plan other improvements she wants to make to her home.
“I’m thinking to myself how nice and warm I will be next winter. There have been some years when it has been so cold in my house I have had to sleep downstairs where my gas fire is. I don’t have to worry about that now because I will have warmth everywhere.
I would say to other people, in order to achieve the end you will have to expect some upheaval and dust, but it is worth it! My heating engineer was very polite and worked hard to accommodate all my needs.
I really do appreciate all the help I have received through this scheme; I could never have done this by myself.”
For more information: http://www.environmentcentre.com/projects/hitting-the-cold-spots and to check your eligibility please call the Environment Centre (tEC) on Freephone 0800 804 8601 (Mon-Fri, 9am-5pm) or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Deadline for applications: Friday 15th July 2016