Warm and safe Wiltshire
Warm and Safe Wiltshire is a commitment from Wiltshire Council and Dorset and Wiltshire Fire & Rescue Service and their partners to help residents live in safer and healthier homes.
The energy advice line for Warm and Safe is provided by the Centre for Sustainable Energy on behalf of Wiltshire Council.
The scheme aims to do this through the installation of draught-proofing measures, smoke alarms to improve fire safety and providing advice on reducing energy use, switching energy suppliers, reducing condensation and damp problems and controlling heating.
Most energy efficiency measures are simple and cheap to implement; in particular improving the insulation to your house. Whether you own or rent your home, there are Government schemes to further reduce the cost, or to pay for this work completely if you are unable to afford the cost of the work yourself.
- Draught-proofing measures such as letter box guards, door brushes and draught excluder strips around doors and windows which can be installed to help stop draughts.
- Cavity wall insulation offer for privately owned or privately rented homes in Wiltshire. We can also advise on possible grants and subsidies that can reduce the cost of installing cost-effective energy saving measures in your home.
- Advise on possible grants and funding towards loft insulation.
- Heating problems in privately owned or privately rented homes – advice on possible grants and subsidies that can reduce the cost of getting heating improvements or repairs in your home.
- Income maximisation – help to identify any benefits that you may be entitled to but are not currently claiming and assistance through the application process, if appropriate.
- Energy debt assistance – advice and support for those who have built up a debt to their gas or electricity provider, to negotiate repayment terms and make applications to Energy Trust Funds to write off energy debts.
- Support can also be given to help you apply for the warm homes discount if appropriate, to reduce your fuel bills.
- Fire safety advice to help you reduce your risk of fire within the home through fire safety advice and the presence of smoke detectors.
- Free advice guides on energy saving in the home, fuel prices and reducing fuel bills, reducing condensation and mould problems.
- Sign up (for those eligible) to SSE Power Distribution Priority Services Register to get advanced notice of any planned interruptions to the electricity supply and prioritised for reconnection if there is a power cut.
If you struggle to pay your energy bills, especially during winter when having the heating on pushes costs up, you could be one of the millions in the UK trapped in fuel poverty.
People used to be classified as living in fuel poverty if you spent 10% or more of your household income on gas and electricity alone. Following a Government review into this definition commissioned in 2010, fuel poverty is now measured by what is known as 'Low Income High Costs'.
Cold homes cause ill health, misery and social exclusion, problems which are faced by many households in Wiltshire as they struggle to keep warm each winter. People who are vulnerable to health problems linked with cold homes are those with cardiovascular or respiratory conditions like chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), babies and children under 5 years of age, people over 65, people with mental health conditions or disabilities and pregnant women.