Social Housing Whole House Retrofit

Client: Cambridge City Council
Measures: External Wall Insulation, Solar PV, Loft Insulation
Location: Cambridge
Date:March 2021 – October 2021
Value: Approx. £1.2m

The Challenge

Cornerstone had worked with Cambridge City Council for a number of years, installing EWI via main contractors and also on private sector schemes.  In 2020, we were directly awarded a new scheme via the Public Contracts Regulations 2015 compliant Efficiency East Midlands (EEM) Solid Wall Insulation framework.

Cambridge City Council were keen to take a ‘whole house’ approach to the properties, installing complementary retrofit measures that would increase SAP scores as far as possible and provide financial savings for their residents.  The scheme involved the installation of external wall insulation to 72 properties, as well as the installation of solar PV to all suitable properties and loft insulation top-ups where required.  In addition, we delivered roof works, ventilation upgrades, fascia and soffit replacement and asbestos removal works.  

The scheme was largely funded directly by Cambridge City Council, although 43% of the properties also received a grant under the Green Homes Grant Local Authority Delivery (LAD) 1 scheme.  

Our Solution

Prior to works commencement, Cornerstone managed the planning application process on behalf of the council, securing approval from the relevant authorities to change the existing brick façade to a clean render finish.  

Cornerstone then oversaw the full work programme, directly installing the external wall insulation - a Wetherby 90mm EPS system with a silicone top-coat.  We also engaged and managed our specialist solar PV, roofing and asbestos removal subcontractors.  

An experienced Site Manager was appointed to the scheme on a full time basis and was instrumental in maintaining exceptional quality standards, achieving technical compliance and keeping the scheme on schedule.  

Our role also involved management of the end to end customer journey, ensuring that residents remained informed throughout the process and that disruption was minimised.  

The Result

The scheme was delivered on schedule and budget – complying with LAD1 requirements and fully meeting client expectations.  As a result, we were appointed to a second larger scheme, replicating the same measure mix, across a further 98 properties, which commenced in September 2021. 

Cornerstone has also provided detailed advice to residents that will help them maximise the benefits of their new measures and make the greatest possible savings on their energy bills.

Resident feedback has been wholly positive, with the benefits of the insulation particularly being felt immediately.  Comments included:

“All of the workmen were always very helpful and would even go out of their way to do all the things you asked them to do.  Very pleased with all the work and the finished look of the property.”  

“We’re very satisfied with the work done – everyone was polite and explained everything well.  We’re very happy with the outcome.”

A total of 190 energy efficiency measures were installed into 72 homes

“I am very pleased with how the project has run so smoothly - even with the weather and supply chain issues Cornerstone have delivered the project in a timely manner and kept the Council informed throughout. I have received positive feedback from residents throughout the project and they are very pleased with the results.”

– Juliet Nicholas, Corporate Energy Manager, Cambridge City Council

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