Retrofit key to becoming England's greenest region


22 September 2021
The virtual retrofit meeting house

Next week's North East regional retrofit conference will explore the opportunity for a coalition approach to retrofitting an entire region of the UK. 

The Low Carbon Homes online event, hosted by the North East England Climate Coalition (NEECCo), will be staged over three mornings (September 28-30), and includes opening addresses and speaker sessions featuring local leaders and practitioners, as well as experts from across the UK sharing retrofit best-practice.

A cross-sector coalition is urging everyone across the North East to come together with the aim of ‘Becoming England’s greenest region’. NEECCo is calling upon every individual, household, business and organisation in the region to sign up and make a pledge to work together, and to help attract significant and sustainable investment, including from government, to build a £1.5 billion portfolio of investable projects.

NEECCo’s aims include agreeing ambitious targets to develop and deliver climate and environmental initiatives to tackle the climate emergency, reverse ecological collapse and deliver a just transition to a new green economy.  Reaching this goal can only be accomplished at scale, and through sectors and organisations working together, so everyone is asked to do their bit, however small.

Sir Paul Ennals, CBE, convening chair, NEECCo, said: "Retrofitting the homes of the north east is a major challenge for us all. With up to 30% of emissions across our region coming from domestic energy use, we know this work is crucial if we want to green the north east and move towards net zero. Key partners in our region are committed to working together, and this conference provides a great opportunity to share ideas, to work out ways of tackling some of the biggest challenges, and to galvanise new partners to join NEECCo's collaborative programme that is led on our behalf by the Northern Housing Consortium."

Content continues after advertisements

Other speakers include:

  • Sam Granger, head of environmental sustainability, Thirteen
  • Joe Hill, sales manage - North, Kensa Contracting
  • Adrian Cantle-Jones, Durham County Council
  • Lewis Aird, business development manager, Stelrad
  • Richard Watson, Northumbria University
  • Tara Hipwood, Northumbria University
  • Zahirah Azizi, Northumbria University
  • Tracy Harrison, CEO, Northern Housing Consortium
  • James Moran, area sales, Panasonic
  • Ross Holleron, head of innovation, Sero
  • Paul Kilby, regional partnership manager, Glasgow City Council
  • Sean Conway, business development manager, Eurocell
  • Alex Cole, director innovation & consulting, Midlands High Growth
  • Paul Fiddaman, CEO, Karbon Homes
  • Jamie Driscoll, mayor, North of Tyne
  • Matt Harrison, programme director, social housing decarbonisation, BEIS
  • Samantha Tullock, strategic assets business lead, Believe Housing
  • Emily Thompson, director of climate change & fuel poverty, Groundwork

This is a free-to-attend online event bringing professionals from inter-related sectors together to collaborate and consider the scale of the challenge, the solutions available and the barriers to overcome.

Low Carbon Homes’ will debut the all-new virtual retrofit meeting house at the event, enabling attendees to gather in rooms and at tables. Set in a virtual house environment, the house features technology of event partners Kensa Contracting, Panasonic, Stelrad and Eurocell.

“We’re committed to staging our events in the most engaging and informative ways, while also minimising our carbon footprint. This latest innovation builds upon the rewarding experience of past events to create a truly memorable event focussed on the crucially important topic of retrofit. So where better to meet, than in the retrofit meeting house?” said Graham Lock, founder, Low Carbon Homes

After the North East, Low Carbon Homes will be staging further events across the UK. Next is Glasgow, hosted by Glasgow City Council on  October 19-21, then Suffolk in November and Lancashire in December.

Registration for the North East event closes at 4pm, September 27. Registration for all events is open here.