IHBC warn government on retrofitting older homes
In November 2017, the Institute of Historic Building Conservation (IHBC), along with several leading heritage organisations and client bodies, wrote to the government to highlight the way ‘flawed’ energy efficiency policy is leading to mis-treatments in traditional buildings.
Advised and led for the IHBC by ‘Green’ Panel Chair John Preston, the IHBC has joined together with other bodies - including the Church of England and the National Trust - to write to the Government to explain that the one-size-fits-all approach to energy efficiency fails to recognise the unique nature of heritage properties.
John Preston said:
"This collective letter and release is from a group of heritage bodies with a critical mass which should make Government sit up and take notice. Anything others can do to spread the word will only help.
"This initiative complements the technical evidence gathered by IHBC, SPAB, HE, HES, STBA and NT, and takes the issues raised to a much higher public and political level. This is a crucial step in arguing for radical changes to Government approaches to retrofit specifically, and to counter the damaging impacts of deregulation in terms of both unavailability of advice, and the damage and waste arising from uncoordinated and inappropriate measures.
"Pending a response from Ministers to the letter, a further crucial test will be the (delayed) publication of the Government’s response to December 2016’s consultation on SAP and RdSAP, on which EPCs and the whole basis of the Government’s approach to retrofit depend. This response may be published by 20 November if it is not delayed again. Watch this space!"
IHBC Chair – and co-signatory of the letter – James Caird said:
"We share the Government’s concern on climate change and agree that energy efficiency is central to tackling it but there are substantial flaws in the policy which left unaddressed have the potential to damage homes, cause disruption in the property market and fail to achieve the Government’s energy efficiency objectives.
"Older buildings are an important part of our national heritage and are highly sought after for their character. It would be a tragedy for the Government to put them at risk with an overly simplistic approach to energy efficiency.
"Together we want to encourage better investment in housing to achieve warmer, more efficient homes, but this is undermined when property owners do not have faith in the information found in energy performance certificates."
- National Trust.
- Church of England.
- Sustainable Traditional Buildings Alliance (STBA).
- Society for Protection of Ancient Buildings (SPAB).
- Historic Houses Association (HHA).
- Institute of Historic Building Conservation (IHBC).
- Joint Committee of the National Amenity Societies (JCNAS).
- Country Land and Business Association (CLA).
 Find out more
 Related articles on Designing Buildings Wiki
The Templar Hotel on Vicar Lane has been listed at Grade II by the Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport on the advice of Historic England.
Government has announced a new Champion for Modern Methods of Construction as part of the government’s drive to make the UK the global leader in housing standards.
Planning is about so much more than the number of applications approved and the speed of processing them so the RTPI is commissioning research aimed at producing a toolkit that can demonstrate a wider range of outcomes.
London blogger The Gentle Author has been photographing the changing face of London, focusing on what is known as ‘facadism’, the practice of destroying everything apart from the front wall and constructing a new building behind it.
Urgent repairs have been ordered to save one of the country’s most endangered buildings from dilapidation while Great Yarmouth Borough Council seeks an investor.
SNH has published new guidance on how best to fit pollinators into urban design and construction with a series of easy steps to suit all project budgets and sizes.
Applications are invited for the Sustainability Scholarship 2020, with successful applicants to receive £3000, support and mentoring from experts, and closing 29 November.
It was hoped the 1.4 mile (2.3km) Victorian Queensbury Tunnel could be used by cyclists travelling between Bradford and Halifax, but plans have been threatened.
Completing works that widened public access to the hidden architectural spaces and collections of Durham Cathedral showcases exceptional project management.
This month HSE is carrying out its latest construction inspection initiative with a focus in particular on measures in place to protect workers from occupational lung disease caused by asbestos, silica, wood and other dusts when carrying out common construction tasks.
Peterborough and Birmingham are the latest places to benefit from the Government Hubs programme to regenerate city centre sites.