Furniture Clinic (Canvey Island): Warming the building fabric…

Keith Cooper’s Canvey Furniture Clinic franchise is the latest recipient of an EU grant from the Low Carbon Business programme. The leather restoration firm used funding support to install a wood burner to heat their premises in place of a myriad of portable electric heaters.

“We try to keep as much as we can out of landfill so this project fits into our mantra” Keith Cooper

Pictured: Keith Cooper holding the Low Carbon Business plaque above his wood burning stove. He promised that it wouldn’t end up in there!

Keith was originally referred to the Low Carbon Business team via his Business Link advisor back in 2010. Having undertaken a full Green Business Audit, a number of elements of the business operations were looked at, not least the use of cloth for working on the upholstery. A link was made with a local firm The Village Laundry who needed to dispose of torn sheeting and towels, Keith’s business was the perfect fit to re-use these first!
The old fluorescent lighting was upgraded to better quality (and lower energy) daylight bulbs, positioned where they were most useful. Following the positive impact of these steps, attention was then turned to the various electric heaters which were in use throughout the year in the workshop. Again, the Business Energy Advisor explored all options available to them on site, including the level of untreated wood waste dealt with as part of their normal operations. It was apparent that installation of a wood burning stove (subject to approval by CPBC and a D6 Waste Exemption Certificate) would offer a good option. Furniture Clinic applied for a carbon reduction ERDF grant from the Low Carbon Business programme for assistance towards the cost of this work.

Furniture Clinic was successful, given the potential economic and environmental benefits so received sufficient funding to enable them to proceed. It has already shown to be of huge benefit; both in terms of significantly reduced energy spend (from the lighting and heating savings) and in the controlled reduction in wood waste previously dealt with by the local skip company of around 3 tonnes. Together, this is equates to a saving approaching £900 and 3 tonnes of CO2 equivalent.