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Warm glow for council tenants thanks to early Christmas Present

Hundreds of council tenants in Renfrewshire are getting an early Christmas present which will help keep them warm this winter.

A programme to install modern, more efficient heating systems in every council house is now underway, with the contractors Apollo and Wates installing the new systems in hundreds of homes before Christmas.

A total of around 4000 homes are scheduled to have their old heating systems replaced as part of Renfrewshire Council’s £138million five-year Delivering Housing Improvements Programme.

The early stage of the programme will focus on replacing electric storage systems and gas systems with back boilers with gas central heating with a modern condensing boiler.

Councillor Brian Lawson, Convener of Renfrewshire Council’s Housing and Community Safety policy board, said: “We want to make sure every house has a modern efficient central heating system. These will be more environmentally-friendly and will cost tenants less, helping to tackle fuel poverty. This is especially important at this time of year when we’re coming up to the festive season and the weather is much colder.

“This is part of a massive, long-term investment in Renfrewshire Council tenants’ homes which will also see tenants getting brand new kitchens, bathrooms and upgraded rewiring in their homes. We’re coming into the second year of the programme which will see work stepping up across Renfrewshire and will include the start of pilot external improvement projects.

“As well as the improvements to our tenants homes Delivering Housing Improvements is benefitting the wider community by providing employment and training opportunities for local residents, supply chain opportunities for local businesses and even sponsorship for local community sports clubs through the contractors working with the council.”

One tenant who is already enjoying her new heating system is 79-year-old council tenant Janet Kelly of Hillview Road, Paisley.

Janet said: “It’s brilliant and it heats up much quicker than the old system. It’s absolutely a nice early Christmas present.”

Brian Morrow, Divisional Director at Apollo, said: “As the successful Kitchen & Bathroom Programme continues, Apollo is also delighted to be helping warm up homes for tenants across Renfrewshire with efficient new heating systems. We look forward to continuing our work with all Renfrewshire Council tenants and wish them all a very merry Christmas and a happy New Year in their improved, warmer homes.”

Gillian Lavety, Business Manager at Wates, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with the council on a framework that will make a hugely positive impact on the lives of thousands of Renfrewshire Council tenants.”

All social-rented accommodation in Scotland needs to meet the Scottish Housing Quality Standard by 2015. This major programme of housing improvements will ensure all of Renfrewshire Council’s housing stock meets that standard.
Information for tenants about the Scottish Housing Quality Standard or Renfrewshire Council’s Delivering Housing Improvements programme is available at www.renfrewshire.gov.uk/housingimprovements or by contacting the Housing Investment Team on 01505 384 303.