Notes on Energy Group Meeting 1st April 2014

The Energy Group met this evening in the Swan in the Rushes pub, with an agenda focused on organising the Loughborough Energy Efficient Homes event on the weekend of 17th & 18th May.  We currently have Bertil (Woodhouse Eaves), Kyle (Woodhouse Eaves), Graham, Barry, Sue and Philip who have indicated they are willing to open their homes.  We also have an 80% chance of Caroline opening her home (needs to check with one last housemate) and one of Philip’s neighbours may wish to take part as well.  Now we need to rapidly finalise the home owner information pack and get it back to these people asap.

We have hopefully hit the minimum number of six homes required by our grant from CSE.  We could still accept other home owners until 17th April (when the home owner information needs to be on the CSE website).  Suggested University sustainability team & New World Solar PV customers might have people who might still be interested in opening their homes.  Steve suggested talking to HREC to see if any of their community groups would like to take part.

ACTION: Caroline to contact NWS to see if they’d contact solar PV scheme folk

ACTION: Steve to take home owner info pack (when finished) to HREC to see if anyone in their community would be interested in taking part.

ACTION: Jon to send information pack to University sustainability team to see if they and/or the Environment Champions would be interested.

Philip had taken the Bristol home owner information pack that we had got as part of attending the MEA organised open homes training event in Chesterfield last Saturday.  The meeting worked through much of the information tailoring it to Loughborough’s needs and set up.  We also looked at the poster/flyer that Jon had produced and some suggestions for alterations in text and photos were made.  As this process took quite a while it was agreed to delegate altering the home owner fact sheet/check list section to Jon to do after the meeting.

ACTION: Jon to update home owner fact sheet/check list section of information pack to meet Loughborough’s needs.

ACTION: Caroline to check if CSE have a more culturally diverse photo of an open homes visit we could use on the poster.

ACTION: Jon to alter poster based on comments.

ACTION: Jon to update our website page to provide more information for the poster link to go to and also to link to the CSE website where home owner details will be loaded.

ACTION: Philip to update information pack based on comments.

We then discussed the media and publicity issues and how they effect the budget we have.  Caroline had indicated some of the firm/fixed costs we already have – much of which we’re underspending on at the moment.  However some of the savings are being used to pay for the MEA display vehicle to attend Loughborough on 10th May.  We decided to produce 1000 flyers rather than 2000 as this would allow us to give 500 to home owners to give to friends & neighbours and 500 to give out at the town centre promotional event and in Library/community centre.  Steve said his experiences showed that very few leaflets are picked up if just left in such places, but its worth having a few there.

ACTION: Caroline, Judy and Jon to staff MEA display in town centre on 10th May.

We discussed translations of the poster we have a budget line for (based on Philip’s earlier Retrofit budget). It was pointed out that our target community usually either read English themselves or have family who can read English text to them, so translating the poster for this event might not be a worthwhile use of funds.  Steve pointed out that it still be useful to ask the HREC folk if they thought this was a reasonable idea and if not Caroline said we’d need to check that CSE were OK with us not spending that part of the money.

ACTION: Steve to talk to HREC about need for translation of poster into Bengali.

ACTION: Caroline to check with CSE if its OK if we don’t spend our budgeted translation money.

Another aspect of publicity is putting some adverts in the Loughborough Echo.  We had originally thought we’d have to get an advert designed but it was suggested that we use the A5 flyer version of the poster that Jon had produced.

ACTION: Philip to contact Loughborough Echo about getting the flyer put in as an advert for three weeks leading up to the event in May.

We also considered Judy’s suggestion of a draught excluder making workshop.  We didn’t think it was possible to do on the LEET open homes weekend itself as we’ll already be very stretched opening homes and supporting home owners.  However the idea is great and is something that should be considered for later in the year.  Jon asked if there were any council run energy effiiciency/thrift events that this could be allied with. There was also some discussion about funding such future events (either by individuals chipping in, pushing the solar PV scheme again or crowdsourcing project funding), but further discussion will require direction from the finance committee (which is meeting tomorrow evening) and/or the next quarterly general meeting.

Date of Next Meeting: Tuesday 6th May 7-9pm in Swan in Rushes.

We also decided that the meeting after the May event will be Tues 3rd June, at a venue to be decided at the next meeting.

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