Simon Thorneycroft lives in Whittington with his wife and two small children. They’ve been working hard to reduce their carbon footprint…
We are still tracking our savings but so far our direct debit for gas and electric has come down by about £700 a year (offset by £150 for wood fuel)!
The loft was insulated and I have topped this up by boarding out half of it with boards made from cut up wardrobes.
We used local tradesmen to upgrade the central heating to make it more efficient including the fitting of thermostatically controlled radiator valves.
Using local trades people is neighbourly and also cuts down road miles.
The upstairs windows were rotten in places and these have been replaced with wooden double glazed units.
The computer has a special plug, so that when you turn it off it automatically turns of the printer etc.
We have set up the television etc so that they can easily be turned off together to discourage us from leaving them on standby.
We also save electricity by using low energy light bulbs and minimising the use of the tumble drier.
We have had solar panels installed on the roof that heat a large percentage of our hot water. In the summer it produces nearly all our hot water but even on cold sunny November days it will heat a full tank.
We have replaced the gas fire with a wood burning stove which cuts down our use of the central heating quite a lot. We have been given quite a bit of reclaimed timber, and the logs we buy are forestry waste.
In the garden we have two water butts to store rainwater, one of which was salvaged from a skip. We also have a compost heap and plans for a vegetable patch. Growing some of our own fruit and vegetables should reduce our food miles.