Friday, 8 October 2010

Flocking to Grange Moor as the Eco Childrens Centre opens

Sheepswool insulation ready to be rolled out.
Today was the opening of a new Childrens Centre in Grange Moor in the Kirkburton Ward. It's a real acheivement for Kirklees and has a very high green specification. The walls are highly insulated with wool from local sheep, it has a green roof using sedum and is heated using an air sourced heat pump. Most importantly the kids, the local mums and dads and the staff like the building. I and Parish Cllr Michelle Atkinson were lucky enough to look round the building during construction and experienced first hand the enthusiasm of the builders for the eco features of the new centre they were working on. One particularly satisfying thing was that it was partly financed by the Renewable Energy Fund established by the Green Party in a budget amendment over 10 years ago now. I mentioned this to one of the Conservative Councillors in Kirkburton Ward today and she got all unnecessarily unpleasant asking what I was doing there. I came up with a bizarre spurious answer saying I was a Kirkburton Parish Councillor and it's a Childrens Centre for the whole of the Kirkburton area. Dubious I know.

Parish Cllr Michelle Atkinson with the wool
With the price of wool dropping , finding a new insulation market for sheepswool could be a real boon for many hill farmers. It won't replace mineral fibre wool overnight but it could play an increasingly important role in prestige buildings where the low embodied energy of construction products will be valued. From this base sheepswool could go on to become a much more mainstream product. Here's a picture of Michelle doing what you couldn't do with fibre glass insulation without gloves and and a paper suit.

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