By Rosanna Apps

Warmer Hanover Houses was the topic in question at the Hanover centre when Brighton’s eco community came together.

A range of eco businesses gave Hanover residents the important issues involved when working towards an energy efficient home.

Event co-organiser Paul Norman from Hanover 10:10 gave an outline to the future energy saving renovations of the centre which include roof and wall insulation.

His fellow organiser Jackie Glove provided some interesting facts about British households; for example, UK homes account for 30% of the country’s carbon dioxide emissions.

Alex Hunt from the Green Building Partnership was the first speaker, sharing interesting facts about the huge amounts of carbon that households emit.

He showed how one household can create five and a half billion tonnes in one year, which is the equivalent of a 275,000 mile train journey or an around the world trip 11 times.

Mr Hunt spoke of the different types of house insulation, the comparisons between internal and external wall insulation and the impressive figures of improvement in heat saving.

Kayla Ente spoke briefly about her new project; Brighton and Hove Energy Services (BHESCO), a not-for-profit organisation that will collectively buy energy to give Brighton and Hove customers a discounted price.

Ms Ente said: “Brighton is the perfect town to start a project like this. It is an experimental community and an informed population.”

An example of ways to improve energy efficiency was brilliantly presented by Paul Early who lives in Whichelo Place, just around the corner from the centre.

His home has just been part of Brighton and Hove Eco Houses.

Mr Early's presentation showed people the various possibilities available, with advice on what he found best and what he would do differently.

Interestingly, the best and easiest way to save some heat was to use curtains.

Mr Early used a range of insulation in his home, with external wall and lime stone rendering, sheep’s wool in the roof and Warmcell under the flooring, which is recycled newspaper and is reasonably priced at around £50 a room.

Since he renovated his home, his energy bills are lower, the carbon emissions of the house have decreased and his family are warmer and more comfortable.

For Paul, a comfortable life was worth all the costs.

Condensation was discussed by Toby Rollerstone from MacConvilles Building Consultants which was brief but interesting.

Mr Rollerstone expressed the importance of ventilation in the home, especially once it has been made draught free.

This was followed up with a few slides showing ways to save heat through ventilation systems.

Duncan Baker Brown closed the evening with his presentation about the government feasibility study, showing what Southampton Street, Hanover would and could be like if the whole street had external wall insulation.

Aesthetically there was surprisingly little difference between the before and after projections and there was a hugely positive attitude towards the idea from the audience, with many hoping such an idea could eventually take place.