Author Archives: calderdaleforum50plus

CYCLING: Free Maintenance Training

  • Safety check, clean & lubricate
  • Wheel, tyre & Tube removal, mending punctures
  • Brake adjust cables & blocks
  • Gear adjustment

Bring your own bike or bikes will be available. The course is catering for an age group 16 or above.

Just turn up on the day or more information ring 01274 753556 or email westyorkshire@bikeright.co.uk.

Speak to your training provider or visit cyclecityconnect.co.uk/cycle-training

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WASTE: New Permit Scheme For Tips

Changes are being introduced in Calderdale’s Household Waste Recycling Centres (HWRC) to help improve efficiency, reduce queue time and better manage waste disposal costs.

From Monday 26 November, Calderdale Council will introduce a trial permit scheme, initially for users of HWRCs in Brighouse and Elland. Residents will need to display a permit in their vehicle to prove they live in Calderdale. This is to reduce usage of Calderdale HWRCs by residents of other nearby boroughs.

Permits will be free and will be issued at the site offices at both Elland and Brighouse HWRCs. Residents will need to produce a valid driving licence as photo identification and a recent utility bill as proof of address.

It’s hoped the scheme will cut down on queue times at these busy sites and help reduce waste disposal costs. Following the trial period, consideration will be given whether to extend the scheme across the borough.

New charges are also being introduced for disposing of plasterboard, hardcore and rubble from Monday 3 December. These materials are difficult and costly to dispose of, so to help meet challenging budget savings and bring Calderdale in line with many other UK councils, a small charge will be introduced.

Both Elland and Sowerby Bridge HWRCs are unable to accept any plasterboard, hardcore or rubble, but all other sites will take up to six bags of these materials. Each bag of rubble will be charged at £2.50, with plasterboard bags at £3 per bag.

Calderdale Council’s Cabinet Member for Communities and Neighbourhood services, Cllr Susan Press, said:

“We want to make sure that our Household Waste Recycling Centres can continue to operate and maintain existing opening hours. In order to do this, and while managing increasing savings requirements, it’s necessary to make some changes to the way our centres operate.

“These changes have been carefully considered, taking into account disposal costs and how other authorities operate. We’re also trialing the introduction of measures to ensure our sites are only being used by Calderdale residents, helping to reduce waiting time.”

For more information about the changes, visit https://www.calderdale.gov.uk/v2/sites/default/files/hwrc-december-2018-changes-leaflet.pdf

NEWS: Stroke Charity Moves

Click on image to enlarge

Different Strokes Calderdale is moving to Halifax. This is a UK charity providing active, self-help and mutual support to working age and younger stroke survivors.

The Calderdale group is a place for younger stroke survivors to meet other people affected by stroke  and take part in activities to aid rehabilitation.

The group will be meeting at Cafe Nero, Southgate, Halifax, 12:30pm-2:00pm on;

  • Thursday 8 November
  • Thursday 6 December
  • Thursday 10 January

For further information email Geoff.Render@differentstrokes.co.uk or call 07434 958024.

TIPS: Keeping Warm Part 2

More tips from Calderdale Council on keeping warm this winter:

Tip 6 – Apply for warmth on prescription

Are you an owner-occupier OR a tenant in private rented home with a long-term or chronic health condition made significantly worse by living in a cold home?

If you receive a qualifying benefit, or are on a low household income, you may be able to apply for a ‘warmth on prescription’ grant.

Grants of up to 50% (to a maximum £5,000) are available for the cost of heating and insulation. Interest-free loans are available to fund the balance of the cost. Work that can be carried out with this grant includes:

  • a new gas central heating boiler, if the existing boiler cannot be repaired;
  • a new gas central heating system, for properties on electric heating or solid fuel;
  • standard loft and cavity wall insulation;
  • non-standard insulation, such as solid wall insulation or polyurethane foam.

Note: All the work is subject to survey and available funding. If you privately rent your home, you must provide written consent from your landlord with your application to authorise the works.

Ask your GP Practice or health professional (Practice Nurse, Health Visitor, social worker) to refer you into the scheme. As well as proof of benefits, or details of low income, we just need a very short referral in writing or by email from a health professional which clearly states your health conditions and confirmation that they are made significantly worse by living in a cold home.

To apply for the scheme, visit: Better Homes Yorkshire to request a no-obligation survey and quotation for the works required.

Or contact Better Homes on telephone:

0800 597 1500 (free from a UK Landline) or

0113 897 0977 (local or mobile call charges may apply).

Once you receive the Better Homes quote, please complete the PDFEnquiry Form [PDF 199KB] and email or post it back to our email address below with a copy of the quote, details of your benefits and referral from your health professional.

For more details, please contact:

Tip 7 – Switch your energy supplier for a cheaper deal

Have you reviewed your gas and electricity tariff in the last 2 or 3 years?

If your previous deal has finished, and you are on your supplier’s standard variable rate deal, you may be able to get a better deal and save money.

You can either:

  1. Contact your current supplier and ask if they have any better deals that would save you money, or
  2. Shop around with other suppliers to try and find a cheaper deal.

White Rose Energy is Calderdale Council’s preferred ‘not for profit’ energy supply company. If you have a pre-payment meter, you may still be able to change to White Rose Energy. This service is available for all residents in privately owned, rented or social housing.

Before you start shopping around to change your energy supply, you should have details available about:

  • how much energy you use per month; or
  • how much you spend per month on your heating and energy costs.

For more details, contact:

Tip 8 – Fit a smart meter

Smart meters put consumers in control of their energy use, allowing them to adopt energy efficiency measures that can help save money on their energy bills and offset price increases.

Smart meters are the next generation of gas and electricity meters and offer a range of intelligent functions.

For example, they can tell you how much energy you are using through an In Home Display (IHD). They communicate directly with your energy supplier, meaning you will get accurate bills, and there will be no need for your energy supplier to visit your home to read your meter in future.

Benefits of smart meters

Smart meters bring a wide range of benefits. For example:

  • smart meters give you near real time information on energy use – expressed in pounds and pence.
  • you will be able to better manage your energy use, save money and reduce emissions.
  • smart meters will bring an end to estimated billing – you will only be billed for the energy you actually use, helping you budget better.
  • in time, smart meters will make switching supplier smoother and faster, making it easier to get the best deals.

You will not be charged separately for a smart meter or for the In-Home Display. Under current arrangements you pay for the cost of your meter and its maintenance through your energy bills, and this will be the same for smart meters.

Benefits for prepayment customers

Smart meters can work in prepayment or credit mode. Prepayment customers will see some particular benefits from having a smart meter. For example:

  • your energy supplier may be able to offer you new and more flexible ways of topping up your meter that don’t require you to visit a shop.
  • you’ll be able to see your balance on your easy-to-access In Home Display, so you don’t unknowingly run out of credit.
  • your smart meter can be set to top up automatically, so that if you do run out of credit at night or when the shops are shut you won’t be left without power.

Further information on the benefits of smart meters, what they are and how they work, is available on the  Smart Energy GB website .

Tip 9 – Fit draught proofing and radiator reflector panels

Fitting draught proofing to get rid of cold draughts around leaky wooden external and cellar doors and windows will make your home feel much warmer and comfortable.

Radiator reflector panels behind radiators can also stop heat being ‘lost’ to the wall by reflecting it back up into the room.

Small grants are available for to fit draught proofing and radiator panels for residents in owner occupied, private rented or social rented homes who are in ANY of the following groups:

  • On a low income of less than £21,000 per year and savings of less than £16,000;
  • In receipt of qualifying benefits; or
  • Over 60 years old.

If you do not qualify to have the work done free of charge, it can still be done for a small fee to cover the cost of materials and the Handyperson’s time.

For details and to arrange the work, contact:

Tip 10 – Claim additional funding to help you with your energy costs

Warm Homes Discount Scheme – This is a credit paid on to your electricity bill once a year if you qualify.

Winter Fuel Payments – This is a payment to help with heating costs for people over a certain age. It is usually paid automatically to people who qualify, but it is worth checking the criteria and making a claim if not.

Cold Weather Payments – These are different from the Warm Homes Discount Scheme and Winter Fuel Payments and may be paid by the government in times of persistent cold weather.

TIPS: Keeping Warm Part 1

Here are five tips from Calderdale Council for a warmer house and a more comfortable winter:

Tip 1 – Fit loft or attic room insulation to keep the heat in

If your home has a standard loft with less than 100mm (4 inches) of loft insulation. This can be topped up to the recommended 270mm (11 inches). The work can be fully grant funded for residents (owner occupiers and private rented tenants – subject to landlord permission) in any of the following groups:

  • lower income households (total income less than £21,000 per year) and savings of less than £16,000;
  • residents over 60 years old;
  • households in receipt of qualifying benefits.

If your home has an attic bedroom, this can also be insulated through the Council’s preferred energy efficiency scheme, Better Homes Yorkshire.

Grants to cover the cost of the work are available for the above qualifying households.

For more details and to arrange a no-obligation survey for loft or attic room insulation, visit: Better Homes Yorkshire .

Or contact Better Homes on telephone:
0800 597 1500 (free from a UK Landline) or
0113 897 0977 (local or mobile call charges may apply).

Tip 2 – Install cavity wall insulation – available for brick and stone homes

Does your home have cavity walls made from brick and or stone?

Different types of cavity wall insulation are available that could significantly reduce heat loss from your home.

Cavities can be insulated with fibre or polybead insulation. The work can be fully grant funded, up to a maximum of £1,000. This applies if you are in any of the following groups:

  • lower income households (total income less than £21,000 per year) and savings of less than £16,000;
  • residents over 60 years old;
  • households in receipt of qualifying benefits.

Narrow stone cavity walls (less than 40mm wide) can be suitable for a closed-cell polyurethane (PUR) foam cavity wall insulation.

Certain PUR foam products can be used for homes in flood risk areas as they have waterproof qualities.

Grants are available for the above qualifying households to cover up to the first £2,500 of the cost.Home owners have to pay the balance if the cost of the work exceeds the grant. Affordable interest free loans are available to help spread the cost of the work.

Different guarantees are available for the work depending on the type of insulation used. See:Ofgem – Energy Company Obligation (ECO) .

For more details and to arrange a no-obligation survey and quote for cavity wall insulation, visit:Better Homes Yorkshire .

Or contact Better Homes on telephone:
0800 597 1500 (free from a UK Landline) or
0113 897 0977 (local or mobile call charges may apply).

Tip 3 – Check Your Boiler

Boilers should be serviced once a year in summer to make sure they are working safely and efficiently for the next winter.

Small servicing and repair grants are available for owner occupiers in any of the following groups:

  • lower income households (total income less than £21,000 per year) and savings of less than £16,000
  • residents over 60 years old;
  • households in receipt of qualifying benefits.

If your boiler is found to be dangerous, or in an unsafe condition, it may be condemned by the gas fitter to protect all of the residents living in the property. So, if you do this work during summer, your boiler can be repaired or replaced in time for winter through one of the Council’s other schemes (please see details below).

We’re not an emergency service, but if your boiler does break down, we can arrange for it to be checked over and assessed to see if it is viable to repair. Small grants are available for owner occupiers in any one of the above groups for servicing and basic repairs. We can also provide temporary electric heaters for very vulnerable residents. If we can’t repair your boiler, you can request a no obligation quote for a replacement through the Better Homes Yorkshire scheme – see tip 4 below for details.

To request a boiler service, or apply for a small repair grant, just print & complete the PDFEnquiry Form [PDF 199KB] and email it back to us via the email address below, or get in touch by phone.

If you privately rent your own home, your landlord is responsible for carrying out annual gas safety checks on all gas appliances in your home, as well as carrying out repairs within a reasonable timeframe. If your landlord does not carry out servicing for your gas appliances, or does not carry out any heating repairs you have requested, contact the Council’s Environmental Health service for advice and support

Tip 4 – Upgrade your boiler and or heating system

Is your gas heating boiler old and inefficient?

A modern energy efficient version could save you up to £350 per year on your heating costs. We have £500 boiler scrappage grants available to replace old, inefficient boilers that are E, F or G rated.

Do you currently heat your home with electric or solid fuel heating?

We can help arrange for a gas connection. We offer a grant of up to £1,000 for a new gas central heating system if you receive qualifying benefits or are on a low household income of less than £21,000 per year and have savings less than £16,000, plus an affordable interest free loan for the difference.

For more details and to arrange a no-obligation survey, visit: Better Homes Yorkshire .

Or contact Better Homes on telephone:

0800 597 1500 (free from a UK Landline) or

0113 897 0977 (local or mobile call charges may apply).

Tip 5 – Fit a modern timer and thermostat control for your heating

If your boiler does not have a timer and room thermostat and is only controlled by an ‘on / off’ switch, it may not be meeting your needs and could be made easier, and more convenient, to use

Boilers with programmable timers can be set for certain times of the day according to your daily routine. Once your home has warmed up to your desired temperature (18 – 21 degrees centigrade recommended), the thermostat will temporarily turn your boiler off for a short while. When the room temperature drops off, the boiler will then turn back on again to heat your home back up. Using a programmable timer and thermostat, you can set the times you would like your boiler to turn on, and also set the desired temperature for your thermal comfort.

If you are an owner occupier or a private tenant and you don’t have a timer and room thermostat control on your boiler and are in any of the following groups, we have small grants available to fit a combined timer and room thermostat through one of the Council’s preferred contractors:

  • lower income households (total income less than £21,000 per year) and savings less than £16,000;
  • residents over 60 years old;
  • households in receipt of qualifying benefits.

To apply for the grant, just complete the attached application form and email or post it back to us via the email address below, or get in touch by phone.

If you privately rent your home, you must provide written consent from your landlord with your application to authorise the works.

EVENT: Piece Hall Xmas Fair

From Friday 30 November to Sunday 2 December there will be a Christmas Fair, showcasing some of the region’s favourite independent craft stalls, artisan makers and pop-up food and drink traders in the stunning surroundings of The Piece Hall.

Entry is FREE on Friday 12:00pm–6:00pm and on Saturday and Sunday 10:00am–6:00pm.

A seasonally decorated stretch tent housing the hand-picked stalls will take pride of place in the central courtyard, sitting alongside a cosy Nordic Tipi that offers the perfect place to warm-up by a roaring fire.

The surrounding independent shops, cafes, bars and restaurants will be open too, making this an unmissable festive shopping weekend.

EVENT: Brighouse Christmas Market

Lots of people are looking forward to this year’s Christmas Market in Brighouse with over 70 stalls of locally made crafts, street food, cakes, cheese, gin and much more.

Stretching over the weekend of Saturday 24 November and Sunday 25 November, the market will include the Christmas Light Switch-on on Saturday 24, 4:00pm.

Check out the latest updates on the market’S Facebook event Page.