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Superhomes Newsletter Oct 2010

Welcome to newsletter No.6. For those
of you who are new to SuperHomes,
this newsletter comes out irregularly as
an update about Old Home SuperHome.
It is mainly bits of information collated
from our end, but can also include
information from SuperHomers
themselves, so please do feel free to let
us know of anything you would like to
see included.

So, first things first. In our last
newsletter we asked for help in
managing the online forum. Mark
Brown and Drummond Richardson
enthusiastically volunteered. Both have
IT experience and were happy to
undertake this task. Please do use the
forum and try to offer advice where
possible. It is unlikely that Drummond
and Mark will know all the answers and
will, I am sure, appreciate support from
all the other SuperHomers.

Harriet Martin, our 63rd SuperHomer,
has suggested that we may like to use a
SuperHomers group which she has set
up using I measure. This is a footprint
measuring tool which allows comparison
between similar homes or similar
numbers of occupants. Harriet has
posted more details on the SuperHome
owners section of the forum, so why not
take a look.

You may also be interested in signing
up to the National Carbon Footprint Day,
an initiative by Donnachad McCarthy,
our 8th SuperHome. This is a once-ayear
initiative to measure carbon
footprints.

I have already told you about being
shortlisted for the Architect’s Journal
Retrofit awards (we will hear on 19th
October). We have now also been
shortlisted for the Energy Institute
awards in their communications
category. We are up against
Resonates, a professional marketing
communications company and Marks
and Spencer, so we will need all fingers
crossed for us on 18th November.

Results from September openings are
now starting to come in. We seem to
ave received quite a bit of publicity, both
local and national. See Telegraph
article which mentioned both the
Handels (superhome 32) and the
Wrights (SuperHome 33). WWF article
Great British Refurb Campaign or the
Home Heating Guide with information
on Tony Almonds Home (50th
SuperHome). Or what about the
Cambrian News with details of Andy
Warren’s home (SuperHome 17). There
are plenty more articles out there if you
feel like having a look.

Not all the results are in, but so far we
know that we had 37 homes open in
September, that’s lots more than ever
before. Many of you opened more than
once during September, indeed some of
you opened every day of Heritage Open
Days, so September probably amounted
to almost 100 actual open events.
This year many of you took advantage
of the online booking systems (either
ours or Heritage’s). This has meant that
some homes had fewer visitors than in
previous years, but it also means
(hopefully) that those who have taken
the trouble to book will be more
interested and more likely to go on to
undertake their own low energy
renovation.

Although we haven’t had quite all the
numbers in yet, we are already up to
3,477 visitors which I am sure you will
all agree is a fantastic achievement (and
a 37% increase on last September). We
also provided a small amount of funding
towards the Stroud Open House events,
those in West Berkshire and Bristol
Green Doors. Well done to everyone
who opened in September and to those
of you who continue to open at other
times in the year.

We have just completed some analysis
of visitor feedback forms which shows
that 98% of respondents were pleased
they came and 98% thought that the
‘touch and feel’ experience offered by
SuperHomes was a good way of
learning. Some 76% of visitors were
inspired to do more in their own homes
and 21% said that they maybe inspired
to do more. With only 4% not inspired.
Not only were they pleased they came
and inspired to go on to do more, but
91% were definitely clear, or maybe
clear, on how to tackle improvements in
their own homes, so we really are
training the SuperHomers of the future.
The full report is available on the
website.

The link up with GBR seems to have
proven quite fruitful so far. Their press
department wrote a number of press
releases for us (see previous section).
They also tried to coordinate local MPs
visits to SuperHomes during September.
Andy Warren took Wales’ deputy
housing minister Jocelyn Davies AM
around his home. Dave Hampton, the
carbon coach
(SuperHome 14) hosted
Dominic Grieve MP.
However this was not as
successful as they had
hoped and we are now
trying to come up with
other ways of getting
decision makers (and publicity winners)
to the homes ready for our next large
opening events.

Incredibly we have just welcomed our
69th SuperHome. This is a major
achievement as we were welcoming our
50th just five months ago. Of course we
would love to find more. In fact we are
aiming to get to 75 before the end of
2010 and if there is anyway we could
get to 100 by the end of March (which
would mean doubling our figures within
a year) that would be fantastic.

Please do have a think about whether
you can help with this in any way. Do
you know of homes which may have
saved 60% of their carbon emissions
and are willing to open their doors at
least twice a year? Please feel free to
give out our contact emails, or get
people to call on 01908 354536 to talk
about what is involved.