Partnership power: delivering air tests to support national charity and local council retrofit projects
The Centre for Sustainable Energy (CSE) is a national charity focused on tackling the climate emergency and ending the suffering caused by cold homes. Their experienced team of Retrofit Coordinators works across the UK to support councils and individuals with their decarbonisation plans. Our teams met at the latest Retrofit Academy Awards ceremony, where both Jack Hannon and Ian Preston, Director of Household Energy Services at CSE, picked up awards for retrofit excellence.
Retrofit projects following the PAS 2035 framework require each dwelling in the project to be properly assessed. In addition, those identified as risk pathway C buildings currently need an air tightness test to be carried out. In practice, many social housing projects fall into this category, as risk pathway C properties include all high-rise buildings, complex structures, or any house falling within a conservation area.
Part of the Retrofit Coordinator’s remit is to commission air tightness testing for risk pathway C properties, yet it is rare to find an air tester with experience in retrofit.
Air tightness testing is primarily a service provided to property developers of new-build dwellings. Testing engineers will normally carry out their work on a building site, rather than at a resident’s home, where potentially vulnerable individuals are present. Without training in how to handle sensitive home visits, there is a risk that the visiting engineer may upset residents, putting the project coordinator in a difficult position.
We solve this problem for the team at CSE by calling on our multi-disciplinary retrofit team. Qualified in both air tightness testing and retrofit, with thousands of home visits carried out between them, our team provides the Centre for Sustainable Energy with the missing piece of their assessment puzzle.
Aligned in our vision for a more sustainable built environment, this is a perfect partnership for us.
We’re proud to partner with Building Energy Experts on retrofit projects where the nature of the building requires us to bring in testing expertise. So far, our team has collaborated on nine projects across Somerset and Wiltshire, with plans for many more.Jenna Willcox, Retrofit Coordinator at Centre for Sustainable Energy
We can provide high-quality, quick turnaround tests from specialists experienced and trained in retrofit home visits. This leads to peace of mind for all involved (tester, resident, and client). Our service is competitively priced, delivered quickly by a team trained in how to approach home visits, and we are very happy to form partnerships where we simply deliver testing, rather than the full assessment.