Barcelona look is all white now

Houses around Ashton Road near Central Drive are now white following wall insulation treatment and (below) before the treatment and (bottom) Barcelona.

Houses around Ashton Road near Central Drive are now white following wall insulation treatment and (below) before the treatment and (bottom) Barcelona.

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It looks more like Barcelona than Blackpool...

But while this blinding white colour scheme has given one estate the feel of a Mediterranean holiday resort, there is a more serious side to the move.

Houses around Ashton Road near Central Drive before the treatment.

Houses around Ashton Road near Central Drive before the treatment.

Around 400 homes on streets off Central Drive are being fitted with solid wall insulation in a bid to help people living there save hundreds of pounds on their heating bills.

The white-walled scheme is being funded by nPower, in partnership with Blackpool Council, as part of the energy company’s pledge to reduce energy usage for poorer households.

And residents on Ashton Road, one of the streets currently being treated, today gave their reaction to its new colour scheme.

William Jeffrey, 73, said: “It does make a big difference as far as I’m concerned.

Barcelona

Barcelona

“It’s very sore on the eyes when the sun hits it but it’s a lovely idea.

“I’d have never have thought of it.”

Robert Davies, 22, said: “I’ve felt the difference.

“It is better and it looks nice but I think it’s cheap.”

Matthew Thomas, 53, said: “It looks better but it’ll be like Balamory before long.”

Solid wall insulation is very costly to install but is the only way that such properties can be made energy efficient, giving a new lease of life to ageing houses.

Coun Gillian Campbell, cabinet member for housing and public protection, said: “Energy costs are, undoubtedly, a huge challenge for many households.

“This pilot project is providing help to tackle that problem for some of the people who need it most.”

The initial project is targeting properties with solid walls, or cavity walls that could not be filled conventionally, typically because they were built before 1920.

It is hoped the scheme will be introduced in other areas of Blackpool in future, should the council be able to attract funding. Peter Jones, managing director of Synergize, the contractor which is carrying out the work, said: “We’re delighted to be working with Blackpool Council on this project and work is progressing well.

“The improvements we’re making will, in effect, provide an insulation blanket around each home that will go a long way to stopping houses haemorrhaging heat and will result in residents being able to make significant cuts to their fuel bills.

“We’re working closely with each resident to ensure we carry out the improvements with minimal disruption.

“We are also providing job opportunities, having already employed a number of local people in a variety of roles, and with further opportunities hopefully arising as we commence further phases.

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Blackpool vs Barcelona

BLACKPOOL

Population: 142,000

Visitor numbers: 10m a year

Average temp (May): 15C

Hours of sunshine in May: 215

Most popular attractions: The Tower, the Pleasure Beach, the Sandcastle Waterpark

Best known for: Being the UK’s favourite seaside resort

BARCELONA

Population: 1.6m

Visitor numbers: 7m a year

Average temp (May): 20.5C

Hours of sunshine in May : 244

Most popular attractions: Casa Mila, the Sagrada Família, the Camp Nou

Best known for: Its nine World Heritage Sites and Barcelona FC

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