• Do you want to help improve the energy efficiency of homes in your area?
  • Are people in your community struggling to pay their energy bills?
  • Confused by the Green Deal and ECO? Not sure what other forms of funding are out there?

On 15 March 2014 Hockerton Housing Project is hosting a free training event for the Community Climate Action Network that will help you to help your community adopt energy efficiency, lower their energy bills and cut their carbon emissions.

  • Try out practical tools for assessing how your community can best lower the carbon footprint of their homes and reduce their energy bills.
  • Hear about inspiring projects in other communities.
  • Find out about funding to help households install energy efficiency measures such as solid wall insulation, new boilers and renewables.
  • Find out how you can lower energy use in community buildings.

For further information please contact Caroline Harmon: ccan@mea.org.uk / 07748 508704.

The event will end with a Bring Your Own Lunch and the option of a tour of the Project. This must be booked separately and there is a charge.

Date posted: January 19, 2014 | Author: | No Comments »

Categories: Community Energy Renewable energy Uncategorized

Hockerton Housing Project has installed solar PV equivalent to a third of its annual energy use.  The remainder of its energy needs (which are all electric) are met by two domestic-scale wind turbines.

Hockerton Housing Project is looking for community energy projects who want to learn from our experience, to take advantage of a new Mentoring Fund.

The scheme is only open to applicants until 12 December 2013, but successful applicants will receive support through to March 2015. It’s a rare offer of funding for community projects that aim to:
·      Generate energy
·      Reduce energy use, and/or
·      Manage and purchase energy

We have a range of experience to share, in terms of scale and technologies, in energy generation, reduction and management. And we are experienced in mentoring a range of projects, having run a similar service through the Energy Saving Trust, as well as our current advisory services.

We would be particularly keen to partner with multiple organisations to improve the cost-effectiveness of our application, with the programme starting with a joint workshop here at Hockerton before moving on to a mix of one-to-one support, community outreach and shared learning initiatives.

Find out more about the fund here, noting the eligibility criteria. If you are interested in the mentoring scheme please get in touch by 2 December, telling us a little about your organization and what you are trying to achieve in the next 18 months.

We look forward to hearing from you!
The HHP team

Following the example of Hockerton’s community wind turbine, which was project managed by HHP, residents of Gamlingay in Cambridgeshire have installed a single 33m diameter wind turbine just outside their village.

This is a local project delivered by the community, for the community, that will significantly offset the village’s carbon footprint. Part of the profit will be used to provide a regular income to the village, as our own SHOCK turbine does, to be spent on local charities and community projects, hence the title ‘Community Turbine’.

We are particularly delighted to see their success as Gamlingay residents attended one of Hockerton Housing Project’s renewable energy masterclasses as part of their initial investigations, and used us as a model of how to deliver a community energy project.

If you are part of a community group looking to deliver a sizeable community renewable energy project in a rural area we would be pleased to assist with your feasibility study, using the support of the Rural Community Energy Fund, or sign up for our next renewable energy masterclass.



Date posted: July 10, 2013 | Author: | No Comments »

Categories: Uncategorized

Think Shakespeare is boring?  Think again!

The Royal Shakespeare Company believes that in order to understand Shakespeare you have to do it! This two day workshop for students in Year 8 and over lets you explore the Romeo & Juliet as actors do – on your feet – in the beautiful setting of Hockerton Housing Project.

Techniques used to explore the story may include:

  • Using the natural environment to set the scene
  • Use of music and sound effects
  • Exploring the use of everyday objects as props
  • Script-writing
  • Developing back stories

The two day course runs from 10:00 to 14:30 each day. Attendees are asked to bring a packed lunch. Drinks and light refreshments will be provided.

Course leaders

Laura Field and Debbie Yates studied with the RSC as part of their postgraduate studies in the Teaching of Shakespeare. They trained at Stratford and now apply the techniques across various settings including a regional Shakespeare festival and a performance at The Swan Theatre in Stratford. As alumni of the RSC they continue to train and have the facilities of the company’s expertise.

Laura is a drama teacher in various schools, providing tuition for all ages up to GCSE English. Laura owns the Spoken Word studio which specialises in developing people’s confidence in speaking publically, LAMDA tuition and tuition for people who need to improve their spoken English. Laura is also a LAMDA examiner.

Debbie was head teacher of a school in Nottinghamshire until 2 years ago. She now lives at Hockerton Housing Project and is developing these courses in this wonderful setting. She is also LAMDA trained and has a Grade 7 in the Speaking of English from the RCM.

Most importantly they both enjoy engaging with children of all ages and seeing them gain in confidence.

Date posted: May 30, 2013 | Author: | No Comments »

Categories: Uncategorized

An air pressure test on a building is a way to measure the air permeability of the building, or put simply, the rate at which it leaks air, and therefore heat.  The less heat a building loses, the less energy is required to heat it.

To perform an air pressure test, the following steps are carried out:

  1. All “designed” ventilation (the openings in the building fabric that are designed to be there, e.g. windows, doors, extract fans, etc) is sealed;
  2. A fan in an air tight lining is fitted into the main doorway of the property;
  3. The fan is powered up until it maintains a constant excess pressure of 50 Pascals;
  4. The rate at which the fan is then working defines the air permeability of the building, which is measured in cubic metres per hour.  A minimum score of 10 (the lower the air permeability the better) is required under current building regulations for new build houses.

All properties being retrofitted are having air pressure tests carried out before the retrofit work commences, and then again afterwards to see what improvement has been made.

Our properties were air pressure tested today and actually scored well for 1940’s houses; one achieved a score of 9.36 (slightly better than current new build standards) and the other 10.6.

Below is a video of the air tightness testing on one of the houses.


Our target for the retrofit is to get those scores down to at least 5.  Our homes at HHP scored an average of 1 when tested just after they were built.  With air permeability rates this low, you need to mechanically ventilate the building, but this can be combined with a heat exchange unit so that much of the heat in the stale air you are extracting can be used to pre-heat the cooler fresh air you are bringing in.  We plan to incorporate a mechanical ventilation with heat recovery unit in the houses as a part of the retrofit, but more on that another day …

Date posted: March 17, 2010 | Author: | No Comments »

Categories: Eco homes Existing Homes Uncategorized