Dear <<First Name>>,
Row of cartoon houses
Wirksworth Transition Community Land Trust

house in tree logo
Charity number 1178158
Newsletter 12 - Nov-Dec 2022

Link to our website.
In this issue
Our Energy Efficiency Forum - on 5 November
Our Open Eco Houses event a resounding success!
Architect Richard Lomas' talk at our AGM
Beware of the cowboys exploiting the cost crisis
Did you know?
Interesting innovations in energy efficiency measures
Our Board

This coming Saturday...

Our Energy Efficiency Forum will be jam-packed with information this Saturday, 5 November, 9.30am to 12.30 at The Maltings, St Mary's Gate, Wirksworth DE4 4DP.

(If anyone has a bit of time to help with tea/coffee making, recording visitor details at the door or other straightforward tasks, please let us know!

Installers - including IMS heat pumps; T4 Sustainability; Hempcrete UK; possibly Orbit Solar; possibly Aereco (ventilation) and information on others.

Several local architects/technicians - who know a great deal about the importance of energy efficiency and how to improve it - will be at a table to answer your questions about retrofitting your house for energy efficiency measures.

At 11am - Andy Lumby, retrofit energy assessor who has done an assessment on a Wirksworth 1950 house, will do a full presentation about it and then answer questions.

Marches Energy Agency will attend with Derbyshire Dales District Council colleagues. Staff from Environmental Health will be on hand to discuss any housing issues residents may need support with, particularly those who rent privately.  We will be offering free energy efficiency advice, giving away LED light bulbs and hot water bottles as well as promoting our current home energy efficiency grant funding opportunities Marches Energy Agency are a fuel poverty charity and can offer support with energy supplier disputes or fuel debt, energy saving tips and installation of energy efficiency measures. (Free helpline on 0800 667 1332 or by emailing
Many displays of information are up on boards, and some of the most important information will be available on paper to take home - with QR codes for accessing the websites on your phones from home.

We will launch our WTCLT volunteer home energy visits (in Wirksworth and Middleton) to discuss your energy use and to show heat leaking out with our thermal imaging camera.

To request this service, contact us by email on with your name and address  and we will be in touch.
                          thermal imaging camera
Wirksworth Open Eco Homes weekend


By Roger Shelley, trustee

Over 1st and 2nd October seven public-spirited local home-owners agreed to take part in another ‘first’ for Wirksworth…  opening their homes not as part of an arts trail, but to nearly 150 people to show them what they have done to make their homes more energy efficient.

owner and visitor There’s always trepidation about organising something like this, but we were in the right place at the right time because the media were looking for human interest around the rapidly escalating cost of gas and electricity, and the BBC noticed us! Watch our (2.5 minutes) coverage on BBC’s East Midlands Today on the day before our event.

Building on this keen appetite for impartial and practical advice – we don’t pretend to have any monopoly on this – there is a real advantage in tapping people’s experiences of how they went about; planning changes, pitfalls they encountered, favourite suppliers, what they would do differently in future, and how much the work has really saved them, in money and energy.

We had a good variety of different kinds of project - from small retro-fit to large new build, and ranging in age and style from 19th century stone cottages to modern.  And we know that there were other houses that we could have included – which bodes well for a successor event next year (please let us know if youpeople viewing house would like to be included).  We have certainly learnt how to do this kind of thing ‘smarter’ and more effectively for another occasion, and we hope to use the various properties with more notes as case studies on our website.

In the meantime, our thanks again to all those who kindly opened up their homes and took the time to show people round and answer the numerous questions, showcasing the future in domestic energy efficiency on our doorstep.
Architect Richard Lomas' talk

At our AGM on 18 October 2022

By Mary Ann Hooper

Richard Lomas, of Lomas and Mitchell Architects in Chesterfield, gave an illuminating talk on doing a "deep retr1960S houseofit" of his own house in Sheffield quite recently. The 1960s house was owned by a man who had made virtually no changes while he lived there from when it was new.

Richard wasn't seeking to invest and make up the cost by the energy that was saved, but to achieve the most comfortable and healthy family house as possible, according to the five building-science principles of the Passivhaus model created in the early 1990s in Germany:
  • Airtightness
  • Thermal Insulation
  • Mechanical Ventilation Heat Recovery.
  • Passive House (High Performance) Windows
  • Thermal Bridge Free Construction
He achieved an 85% reduction in the demand for heating, an impressive amount for an existing house. At one retrofitted housepoint, his budget meant he had to choose between reducing the size of an extension or compromising the demand for energy. He chose a smaller extension to stay within budget. He was upgrading everything in the house, not just the energy efficiency, so the total cost was £190,000 for the work, in addition to the £300,000 paid for the house and plot. It was expensive! But £490,000 would not have bought a house so attractive in his and his family's eyes, so healthy, and so fit for the future.
Beware of the Cowboys

Dangerous devices being sold - taking advantage of the gas and electricity escalating prices. Many don’t work!
                            traffic signs with question mark

Warning! Please don't buy from anyone ringing you or calling at the door until you have checked out that they are genuine. LOTS of cowboys are out there exploiting the cost crisis.

Read a Which report here:
Interesting innovations


Crab and lobster shells being used to make renewable batteries!

Read about it here:

Alternative proteins - food giants investing 'record amounts' in plant-based protein.

Read about it here:
Did you know?

The origin of 'retrofitting'...

The concept of retrofitting became an urgent necessity during World War II, when weapons technology was advancing at an intense pace and planes and ships were becoming outdated even before their construction was complete, and the only solution was to retrofit the completed craft with the brand-new technology.

Retrofitting was revived on a massive scale during the energy crisis of the 1970s, when new features were added to millions of old houses to make them more energy-efficient. Retrofitting is thus different from merely renovating, which may not involve any new technology at all. 

Our Board
Mary Ann Hooper (Chair)
Noel Mayes (Secretary)
Alison Clamp (Treasurer)
Mike Whittall
Richard Rowlatt
Pam Taylor
Roger Shelley

Vacancies: 3
Click on this button if you wish to sign up for this newsletter.
our logoLink to our website.
Contact usour logo

If you know someone who might be interested in this newsletter, please forward it to them, clicking on the words Forward to a Friend below.

(Don't forward the newsletter email directly - it might unsubscribe you.)


Our Facebook page
Our website
Copyright © 2022 WirksworthTCLT, All rights reserved.

Want to change how you receive these emails?
You can update your preferences or unsubscribe from this list.