Oxford retrofit cuts energy consumption by 85%

Image caption The Victorian property on Nelson Street has been retrofitted with a number of energy-saving measures

Two council tenants in Oxford have had their home turned into a showcase for energy efficient technology.

Steve and Shirley Bishop are taking part in a research project looking at the best ways to reduce CO2 emissions in existing UK housing stock.

The couple have seen their energy consumption cut by 85% and hope to see bills drop from £600 a year to £150.

Project leader, Prof Rajat Gupta, from Oxford Brookes University said findings would inform future government policy.

The Victorian terraced property on Nelson Street has been fitted with a number of energy-saving measures and will be studied over a two-year period.

Mrs Bishop, who has lived there for 21 years, said the changes had improved her quality of life and even helped with her asthma.

She said: "It's bright warm, no draughts... the air quality is amazing, it's somehow fresher."

Optimum technologies

There are 86 other houses across the country taking part in the government's Retrofit for the Future programme.

The information will be used to decide on the most cost effective ways of reducing carbon emissions.

The efficiency improvements at the house in Oxford have cost £90,000.

Prof Rajat Gupta said with economies of scale and by picking optimum technologies, whole streets can be retrofitted to make really significant carbon reductions.

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