Social housing retrofitting framework launched

A not-for-profit construction framework provider has launched a new scheme to retrofit and decarbonise Britain’s social housing stock and public sector buildings.

LHC Procurement Group is looking for consultants and specialists in energy efficiency, heating and ventilation, renewables, electric vehicles and solar PV for its new retrofit and decarbonisation framework, named N9.

Launching in autumn 2024, N9 will offer suppliers a significant pipeline of public sector work to support local authorities and social housing providers with net-zero delivery and energy-efficiency compliance.

It aims to drive essential retrofitting works across the sector’s 4.4 million properties and help local authorities and social housing providers deliver urgent upgrades for warmer, more efficient homes. This will be crucial to meeting net-zero objectives and supporting residents grappling with the cost of living.

Meanwhile, local authorities will also be able to use the framework to ensure they meet the government’s target to cut 75% of carbon emissions by 2037 across 1.9m non-domestic public buildings.

‘A huge task’

Clive Feeney, group managing director of LHC, said: “Retrofit and decarbonisation is a huge task for the public sector and social housing providers and requires a skilled workforce who can meet the complexities of this challenge.

“This framework will deliver the expertise needed and offers a huge opportunity for specialists and consultants to make a difference to communities throughout the UK, delivering projects for years to come.

“Housing represents 28% of the UK’s carbon emissions and the government’s Clean Growth Strategy is targeting all social housing to meet EPC C by 2030. Meanwhile, public buildings emit 2% of carbon emissions – a significant figure at an estimated 7.66m tonnes of carbon dioxide equivalent.

“LHC frameworks are already relied upon by the public sector to deliver a pool of pre-approved suppliers and consultants, and they are now looking to N9 to provide experts who can ready housing and building stock for carbon net zero and a decarbonised grid.”

Aligning with public sector demand

N9 will also help to deliver work required by a mix of government and energy company schemes, including the Social Housing Decarbonisation Fund and Home Upgrade Grant.

Together, the schemes are worth £1.4bn, with match funding from social housing from local authorities, social housing providers, and charities adding £1.1bn. It can also support improvements to social housing with an EPC of band D-G under the Energy Company Obligation.

The framework can also be used by hospitals, schools, leisure centres, museums and universities to source experts in low-carbon heating, renewable energy and energy efficiency measures under the £400m Public Sector Decarbonisation Scheme.

Nick Beard, LHC technical manager, said: “N9 will go live later this year and runs until 2028, so it perfectly aligns with peak public sector demand for expertise in energy efficiency and low-carbon heating solutions.

“At LHC we are very proactive in our work to attract smaller and more local businesses and underrepresented groups to apply to be part of our frameworks, and the tender process has been adapted with this in mind.

“For example, to access many of the government funding streams, installers must be PAS 2030 certified. Part of our process will be to support appointed companies in achieving these standards within two years of joining the framework, if required. 

“Ultimately, we want to hear from and work with hard-to-attract organisations that have never been appointed to public sector projects before and create new opportunities for the market.”

Retrofit and Decarbonisation (N9) Framework workstreams and lots

Workstream 1 – Consultancy

Lot 1 – Energy Policy & Strategy Development and Grant Funding Support

Lot 2 – Management Agent / Multi-Disciplinary Consultancy

Lot 3 – PAS 2035 (Domestic Building Audits & Heat Decarbonisation Plans)

Lot 4 – PAS 2038 (Commercial Audits & Heat Decarbonisation Plans)

Workstream 2 – Multi-Disciplinary Works

Lots 5-7 – Multi-Disciplinary Works

Workstream 3 – Building Insulation & Performance (Passive)

Lots 8-12 – insulations

Lot 13 – Rainscreen Cladding

Workstream 4 – Heating Systems

Lot 14 – Domestic Boiler Based Heating Systems

Lot 15 – Domestic Renewables Space Heating Systems

Lot 16 – Commercial & Communal Heating Systems

Lot 17 – District & Network Heating Systems

Lot 18 – Electrical Heating Systems

Lot 19 – Building Ventilation Systems

Note – Focus on Renewable Specialists:

               Lot 16 includes ground source heating systems.

               Lot 18 includes electrical renewable sources.

Workstream 5 – Control and Management Systems

Lot 20 – Building Management Systems

Lot 21 – Individual Metering

Workstream 6 – Electrical

Lot 22 – Solar PV and Battery Storage

Lot 23 – EV Charging

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