Colchester Borough Council is monitoring the situation closely and will continue to take action to minimise disruption and keep residents and visitors safe.
Coronavirus: updates, advice and guidance
Energy Saving Home Improvements
There are a number of ways that you can make energy saving improvements, save on energy bills and make your home warmer such as:
Also take a look at the Energy Saving Trust's top 10 'quick wins' and see if you're saving as much energy as you could be.
Energy Saving Advice
To receive further free and impartial advice on energy saving measures you can contact:
The Energy Saving Trust
Phone: 0300 123 1234
Smart Meters are the new generation gas and electricity meters being rolled out across Great Britain. They show you the amount of energy you use in near real time and how much you are spending in pounds and pence.
Every energy supplier will be providing smart meters to their customers between now and 2020. How soon you can get one depends on your supplier's plans.
How to switch to a Smart Meter?
Smart Energy GB is the voice of the smart meter rollout. It's their task to help everyone in Great Britain understand smart meters, the national rollout and how to use their new meters to get gas and electricity under control.
Visit the Smart Energy GB website for further information and advice: www.smartenergygb.org
Enform are a local advisor on the benefits of switching to a Smart Meter, to find out more go to www.en-form.org.uk or email firstname.lastname@example.org or call 01206 367776.
Home Energy Improvement Schemes and Assistance
If you are a private home owner or tenant and are not able to afford or fund energy saving improvements in your property, there are a number of schemes, discounts and grants offered by the government that are available to certain eligible households.
Energy Company Obligation (ECO)
The ECO scheme obligates large suppliers to deliver energy efficiency measures to domestic premises in Britain and this scheme may be able to assist you in getting help for energy-saving improvements to your home if you're in receipt of certain benefits and own or privately rent your property.
You may be eligible to get all or part of the cost of insulation work, for example, loft or cavity walls, boiler replacements, repairs or other upgrades to your heating under this scheme.
Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI)
The Domestic RHI scheme could get you money towards renewable heating costs in your home if you run any biomass boilers, solar water heating systems or certain heat pumps.
You can apply if you live in England, Scotland or Wales and you must either own your home or be a private or social landlord.
Feed-in Tariffs (FIT)
'Feed-in Tariff' (FIT) payments can be obtained from your energy supplier or installer if you generate your own electricity, for example, with solar panels or a wind turbine.
You could get a set amount for each unit (kilowatt hour or kWh) of electricity you generate dependant on the size and technology of your system and when it was installed.
Energy Grants Calculator
If you're interested and want to find out if you may be eligible for an energy grant or help with heating costs, try using the governments energy grants calculator.
There are a variety of affordable warmth payments that may be available to you, dependant upon your eligibility.
Energy Supplier Assistance
You may be able to get help towards energy-saving improvements if you own or privately rent your home, speak to your home energy supplier for more information.
Warm Home Discount Scheme
In certain circumstances households may qualify for a discount of up to £135 off their fuel bill. This will depend upon your personal circumstances and your energy supplier.
Cold Weather Payments
You may get a Cold Weather Payment if you're in receipt of certain benefits when your local temperature is either recorded as, or forecast to be, an average of zero degrees Celsius or below over 7 consecutive days.
If eligible you'll get a payment of £25 for each 7 day period of very cold weather between 1 November and 31 March.
Winter Fuel Payments
You could get between £100 and £300 tax-free to help pay your heating bills if you were born on or before 5 January 1953. This is known as a 'Winter Fuel Payment'.