THE energy-saving developments to council houses in the Lakes Estate have been given the thumbs up by the Government’s Energy and Climate Change Minister.
On Thursday Greg Barker MP visited the estate in Bletchley with Iain Stewart, MP for Milton Keynes South, to see how the £7.7 million regeneration project was affecting residents.
The work, which includes installing double glazing, external wall insulation and new cladding, replacing boilers and installing new warm flat roofs, is being carried out by Apollo, part of Keepmoat, on behalf of Milton Keynes Council.
Barry Clay, contacts manager for Keepmoat, said: “Energy Efficiency is high on the agenda right now and we are highly experienced at proving this type of regeneration work.
“The work we are carrying out not only benefits the environment but also means tenants and home owners could save hundreds of pounds a year on their energy bills.”
Jeanette Marling, chairman of the Lakes Estate Residents Association said the work on the estate is likely to finish in December, and that work on the rest of the estate will begin in 2013.
She said: “The regeneration work and the energy saving things they are doing to these houses is fantastic, and it’s about time too.
“Over the years, the council has carried out a lot of consultation with the residents here, but it has never really come to much.
“This time, we’re finally seeing the results and people really appreciate it.
“A lot of these houses don’t have insulation any more, they’re freezing cold in winter and far too hot in the summer - my smoke alarm used to go off on really hot days!
“A lot of the work is due to finish by December, and the council has reassured us that work on the rest of the estate will be started next year.”
After his tour around the Lakes Estate and visiting some of the residents who have had their homes rejuvenated, Mr Barker said he was impressed with the project.
“The project is really encouraging,” he said. “It brings a sense of pride to the estate and to the people who live here.
“Some of the people here are desperate for the improvements to make their homes much more efficient and energy saving, which will ultimately be money saving too.”
Mr Stewart added: “This is one of the oldest estates in Milton Keynes and one that is in desperate need of this work.
“I’d love to see some of the other older estates in Milton Keynes, and indeed the rest of the country too, given the same treatment, with the energy-saving measures put in place to improve the lives of residents.”