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Village in North Cumbria, UK Greening Up Through Heating, Conservation and Awareness


Residents of a north Cumbria village want to make it the greenest in Britain.
Tony Markley photo

Tony Markley
Plans proposed for Kirkbride, near Wigton, include installing a village-wide heating system, using low energy bulbs and carrying out energy surveys.
It is all part of a £58,000 programme which will be presented to residents at the Kirkbride Energy Fair tomorrow.
At the fair residents will find out how they can reduce their energy consumption and what other people are doing to generate renewable energy.
Residents in Kirkbride have been working with Community Renewable Energy North West (CoRE NW), a social enterprise which works with communities to set up their own renewable energy scheme, to run the programme.
Councillor Tony Markley, chairman of CoRE NW, said: “It’s good to see that the community has been given the opportunity of working with us to investigate the different forms of energy production for rural areas.”
Some residents have been trained to conduct energy audits to find out how much energy householders use – and to make suggestions about how they could reduce their consumption.
Households who have had an energy audit carried out have been given an energy monitor so they can see how much electricity they are using.
A study is also underway to look at the technical viability of developing a district heating system to warm the 210 houses in the village, the school and businesses.
The idea for this scheme came from a public meeting to discuss two anaerobic digesters, or energy farms, which now have planning permission in and near the village.
These farms will produce electricity and enough renewable energy to heat the whole village, from energy crops, silage and manure.
Ann Sowerby, from CoRE NW, said: “We want residents to get involved in carrying out the energy surveys and setting up a company that will ensure the village can take control of its own energy needs – so it is a very exciting opportunity.”
Villagers are being invited to the fair at Kirkbride School tomorrow from 3.30pm.
At the fair everyone will receive a free low energy light bulb.
There will be a free buffet at 6.30pm and then a meeting with presentations and talks about the above subjects at 7pm.

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