New generation of energy efficient council houses are planned for this area of Barnsley

A new generation of council houses which are so energy efficient they will not need mains gas are being planned in Barnsley.

Friday, 3rd January 2020, 4:00 pm

The council has recently made a commitment to reducing carbon emissions as its contribution in the fight against climate change and the new homes would support that pledge.

Members of the authority’s controlling Cabinet are being asked to approve the scheme, which would be more expensive than equipping similar hew homes with mainstream technology.

The proposal is a step short of the ‘Pasivhaus’ benchmark for carbon neutral housing.

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If approved, 16 homes will be constructed at Billingley View, Bolton-upon-Dearne

But the estate of two and three bedroomed homes at Bolton upon Dearne would be seen as a compromise between achieving energy efficiency and controlling costs.

The would feature devices such as air source heat pumps, which operate like a reverse fridge to extract warmth from then atmosphere.

Berneslai Homes, which manages Barnsley Council’s housing stock, would operate the houses though tenants would need special training to ensure they were able to get the best out of the new technology.

If approved, 16 homes will be constructed at Billingley View, with six of those having three bedrooms.

The designs would follow tried and tested blueprints, which have been used elsewhere - albeit with conventional energy technology.

An alternative of using ‘modern’ building methods, modular units constructed onsite, has been considered but is not being recommended on the grounds it would mean council cash being spent outside the area.

Also, that type of design could bring unexpected maintenance bills and greater inconvenience for future residents, should repairs be needed.

A decision on the scheme, which would need investment of around £250,000, will be made when the Cabinet meets later in January.