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Warm Front, Better Health: Health Impact Evaluation of the Warm Front Scheme


Green, G., & Gilbertson, J.

Subject Keywords: UK Government's main tool for tackling fuel poverty in England via grants to improve home energy efficiency
Topic: Fuel Poverty
Fuel Poverty
Chronic Conditions
Catalogue: Research and Evaluation
Type: Report
Region: England

About 4 million households in the UK cannot adequately heat their homes in winter due to low income and poor quality housing, the two main causes of fuel poverty. The primary impact of fuel poverty is cold homes in winter which can lead to various health problems and even death among the vulnerable young and the elderly population. The government launched the Warm Front scheme in 2000 to tackle fuel poverty among the vulnerable households in England by providing energy efficiency measures in the forms insulation and modern heating system(??). By 2004, about 770,000 households had benefited from the Warm Front scheme and a total of 2 million households are still expected to benefit by 2010. Since 2001, the Bartlett has been investigating with London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine and Sheffield Hallam University, the health and the environmental impact of the Warm Front scheme. This investigative study is the most detailed to date on fuel poor dwellings based on detailed surveys of household and dwelling data, fuel consumption record and monitored temperature and relative humidity from 3,100 dwellings before and after the energy efficiency measures. The Warm Front investigation was expected to continue until the end of 2007. The findings from the investigation indicated that the Warm Front scheme was likely to have benefits in terms of improved thermal comfort and well-being as a result of mean temperature rise of 1.6°C in the living room and 2.8°C in the bedroom. Warm Front also lead to a decrease in indoor relative humidity mainly from the increased temperature since there appeared to be little impact on vapour pressure from changes in air tightness. Pressure test results indicated that the effects of air tightness measures such as draught stripping and cavity wall insulation were offset by the installation of a central heating system, particularly when the pipe work feeding radiators was installed below timber floors.





Rights: © Sheffield Hallam University
Suggested citation:

Green, G., & Gilbertson, J.. (2008) Warm Front, Better Health: Health Impact Evaluation of the Warm Front Scheme [Online]. Available from: [Accessed: 21st November 2019].


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