University of Salford’s Retrofit Conference & Energy House Unveiling

Organiser: University of Salford
Location: University of Salford, M5 4WT

On 26 and 27 January 2011 the University of Salford will be holding the UK's first conference on the challenge of how to sustainably retrofit existing housing stock which will also feature the unveiling of the world's first Energy House.

The conference, which has construction and fit-out specialists ISG as its principal sponsors, will see delegates drawn from across industry, the public sector and academia. They will be sharing insights on sustainability challenges and the government's policies to meet them.

Its timeliness is highlighted by the government's announcement of legislation to be put before parliament in December to help bring private rented housing up to energy-efficiency levels of the owner-occupier sector. Under its "green deal," the government wants to enable homeowners to make their house or flat energy-efficient, by installing insulation and draught-proof doors and windows with no immediate payments.

The world's first Energy House was announced earlier this to year to great industry and media interest and it will be unveiled at the conference. It is a full-size traditional Coronation Street-style terraced house built in a laboratory to study domestic energy consumption.

The conference itself will be a business-focused event discussing issues with and associated with Retrofit, and what can be done to improve products and the take-up of new technologies. Delegates will include technology providers, construction companies, installation companies, housing organisations and social landlords, local councils and local government and policy makers.

The Energy House and conference is a response to the sustainability challenge presented by the UK's ageing housing stock. Statistics from the Communities and Local Government English House Condition Survey 2007 Annual Report show that 70% of the country's residential property will still be inhabited in 2050 and 91% of all UK homes would benefit substantially from improvements in energy efficiency. Improved insulation and boiler upgrades alone could see heating emissions reduced by 22%.

Recent research commissioned by Salford has also revealed that 50% of Registered Housing Providers do not yet have a retrofit plan. This is in spite of the government's continuing commitment to the Warm Homes, Greener Homes strategy that has set a carbon emissions target of virtually zero from nearly all housing stock by 2050.

University of Salford Vice-Chancellor, Professor Martin Hall said: "This project is exciting because retro-fitting old properties to make them as carbon-efficient as possible will require detailed and robust research. If there is to be a step change in the UK to achieve our carbon emission reduction targets, it is essential decision-makers have sound evidence to ensure products are tested before being tried out in real homes. The data produced at the University of Salford will support the refurbishment sector and homeowners in making correct decisions when improve the energy performance of existing homes. The unique cross-discipline nature of The Energy Hub also means that our academics, experts and specialists from a range of fields can access and interpret the data, and work together to find innovative solutions."


To reserve a free place or for more details on the conference, please contact Steve Waterworth, Energy Hub Manager

More details about the Energy Hub project can be found at

More photos can be seen at Flickr site