Warmer bedtime stories

CSE solid wall insulation scheme makes it a happy ending

4 October 2011

“I was reading my child a bedtime story and I could see the condensation coming out of his mouth, like smoke. That was a reality moment for me. It just wasn’t acceptable. That’s when I realised we had to do something about our energy.”

Imagine reading your child a bedtime story in a room so cold that his breath is condensing, as if he were outside on a frosty morning. That’s the situation facing more and more families as they struggle with increasing fuel prices, stagnating incomes, and homes that leak expensive heat through their solid walls.

But it was the final straw for Steve. He already knew that the family was spending huge amounts on fuel which wasn’t really keeping them warm and at a cost that meant they had to cut out activities most families take for granted. But he decided to act when he realised the cold was even intruding on the moments he treasured most with his children.

Interviewed on BBC radio, Steve explained what his family life was like and how a scheme developed by CSE helped make it normal again. You can hear his story here.

Steve was a customer of Freedom from Fuel Poverty, a pilot scheme run by CSE in partnership with Bath and North East Somerset Council offering solid wall insulation and PV panels to households in severe fuel poverty.

CSE’s Mike McClelland, who ran the scheme, picks up the story: “It’s clear from listening to Steve that that cold bedtime story was the trigger and made him realise that the short-term hassle and disruption of getting solid wall insulation installed, would be worth it for the long-lasting benefits of being able to keep his family home warm at a cost they could afford.”

As Steve says, “Now the heating hardly needs to be on to keep the place warm and we can afford to do things normal families take for granted.”

To listen to Steve’s interview and understand the human impact of the CSE programme, click here.

Photo: sean dreilinger. Reproduced under Creative Commons

Stay up to date with our work - sign up for our fortnightly newsletter