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Camden's ground-breaking Eco House gets its 1,500th visitor

PUBLISHED: 11:55 30 September 2008 | UPDATED: 15:26 07 September 2010

Myra and George Vasdekys with their Eco House certificate

Myra and George Vasdekys with their Eco House certificate

Camden s Eco House welcomed its 1,500th visitor on Sunday. The showcase house – which has been refurbished to reduce carbon emissions by 80 per cent - was opened to the public in July. A staggering 890 people looked round it during last month s Open Hous

Camden's Eco House welcomed its 1,500th visitor on Sunday. The showcase house - which has been refurbished to reduce carbon emissions by 80 per cent - was opened to the public in July.

A staggering 890 people looked round it during last month's Open House weekend.

Camden's Eco Champion, Cllr Alexis Rowell, who has strongly championed the creation of eco retrofits, said: "

This is amazing news. It proves that people really want to see how a Victorian property can be refurbished to reduce energy consumption substantially."

The 1,500th visitor to the St Augustine's Road dwelling was Londoner Myra Vasdekys. She and her husband George were presented with a special certificate by John Doggart, Chairman of the Sustainable Energy Academy, who has worked with Camden's Housing Dept to make the Camden Eco House a reality. Mr Doggart said: "The fact is that we need every householder and landlord in the country to achieve 60 - 80 per cent carbon savings if we are to prevent runaway global warming. Camden should be congratulated on leading the way."

Mr and Mrs Vasdekys also won a free energy survey of their Victorian home from the GLA's Green Homes Concierge Service who have been providing staff to help with the guided tours of the Camden Eco House.

Two years ago the all-party Camden Council Sustainability Task Force recommended creating zero or nearly zero carbon exemplars in every ward in Camden to inform and inspire residents. Cllr Rowell says he now thinks: "we should have at least one eco-retrofit which is permanently open to the public. Ideally it would be in various stages of rebuild so as to give residents as many insights as possible."

That may become a reality. The Leader of Camden Council, Cllr Keith Moffitt, told last week's Sustainability Task Force meeting that he would support the idea of a having a permanently open eco house.

The Camden Eco House is open from 2pm to 5pm until October 12. After that the keys will be given to a large family on Camden's housing waiting list. The tenants will have to sign a special contract which allows the house to be opened for the annual Open House weekends and experts from University College London, who are monitoring its environmental performance, will be allowed in to check their instruments when they need to.


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