charity woman working in co-working area



If you manage a voluntary, community or social enterprise building you might qualify for a free energy saving assessment.

I am one of the expert advisors on the VCSE Energy Efficiency Scheme, funded by central government, for organisations in the East and West Midlands.

If you qualify for the scheme you can choose me to carry out your energy assessment.

Please contact me for an initial discussion.

You can find out here if you meet the eligibility criteria here.  If you don’t qualify for a free assessment, then contact me for a bespoke quote.  


heat pump in snow


Energy confidence

In December 2022 I was contacted by a household in Coventry who had a heat pump installed in 2010, but it wasn’t performing as well as expected.  The house had a number of insulation measures fitted so they were a bit puzzled as to why it was struggling to heat the home.

I was out of action for a short while in December 2022 as a lorry had ran into us on the motorway (the lorry driver has since admitted responsibility), fortunately our injuries were minor. 

So it was February 2023 before I was able to go see them in Coventry.

By doing a whole-house survey with thermal imaging I was able to advise them that:

  • There were a number of issues with the design of the heat pump, mainly around hot water flow rates and temperatures
  • Some of their insulation and glazing was not performing as expected
  • Their radiators were not ideal for a low temperature heat pump
  • Their heating controls were not as good as the kind of intelligent systems that have emerged in the last decade.  

I was able to recommend a number of low and medium cost measures that could be taken, short of replacing the heat pump.  

They thought about it over the summer and then decided to replace the heat pump, which was coming up to 13 years old, and also because they were thinking of selling the house.

They got a desktop quote from a heat pump installer that had been recommended to them.  They came back to me and we agreed an additional fee for me to do some hand-holding.  

I looked at the desktop quote and was able to advise the householders on:

  • The suitability of the recommended replacement heat pump
  • The heat loss calculation that the installer had carried out
  • The proposal that the installer had made regarding new radiators, heating controls
  • My view on whether the proposed installer had the necessary skills that were needed.

I told the householders that I was happy for them to proceed with getting a full site survey and quote from the installer, and what questions to ask the installer.

I will update this blog when I have heard back from the householders.  Watch this space!

Sadly this is not the only occasion where I have been asked to help a household with an under-performing heat pump.  The good news is that if you get it right then a heat pump is a game-changer for thermal comfort, running costs and greenhouse gas emissions.  Heat pumps do work in the UK climate if you get the design parameters right.

Below you can see videos of two of my clients who are over the moon with their new heat pumps.

First of all, Ben;

Next up, Maggie and Dave (turn your sound up as the sound quality isn’t brilliant, or watch on YouTube and turn the subtitles on).


This week has seen good news that the grant available to homeowners and private landlords for replacing a gas boiler with a heat pump has risen to £7,500. 

If you are a householder, landlord or business thinking about major energy saving measures such as a heat pump, insulation, or solar, then please check out my energy saving advice packages.  I’m completely impartial and not tied to any installer or manufacturer.

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Phil Beardmore cycling in the Custard Factory, Digbeth


Energy confidence

Your 15-minute neighbourhood energy expert … that’s me, and my small team of helpers.

If I can walk to your home or small business in 15 minutes or fewer, then I will give you a 5% discount on my energy advice services.  

My office base is at the Old Print Works, Birmingham, B12 9AH, and is ten minutes walk from my house.

15 minutes means:

  • 15 minutes walk from B12 9AH or B12 9LQ – i.e. Balsall Heath; most of Moseley village, Sparkbrook, Highgate, parts of Edgbaston (I am a fast walker).

Reducing the need to travel is one of the most important things we can do to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and improve air quality.  Reducing car use helps us to connect to people and to nature.  My way of working is based on relationships before transactions.  Remote working means you can build relationships with anyone anywhere in the world, but it’s much better to build networks of relationships locally.  Bumping into my clients while on a trip to the park or the farmers’ market builds relationships in a way that you can’t achieve purely on Zoom.

New clients only.  Applies to standard advice packages and bespoke quotes which involve a site visit of two hours or more (i.e. 99% of my clients).  This overrides previous discounts including the B12 discount … however to my existing clients with B12 postcodes … I love you all dearly and will continue to apply your previous B12 discount.  15-minute neighbourhood does not apply when I am working on other people’s projects, e.g. Footsteps.  Does not apply to clients paying in 6 monthly instalments.  Does not apply to organisations with more than 250 employees.  If you have multiple sites then the discount applies to sites within my 15-minute neighbourhood only.

If booking online, to claim the 5% discount please enter the coupon code 15 at the checkout.  Or if you are paying by invoice I will deduct the 5% from your invoice.  If you think you are within my 15-minute neighbourhood, please go ahead and use the coupon code 15 I trust you to use your discretion.  If I don’t think you are within my 15-minute neighbourhood then I will only challenge you if there is a clear and obvious geographical reason to do so.   If you are within the 15-minute neighbourhood then I will usually walk or cycle, but there may be occasions when I have appointments further afield immediately before or after you, in which case I may drive (car exempt from the Birmingham Clean Air charge due to its emissions rating).  The 15-minute discount is not time-limited, so as long as I am healthy enough to walk and cycle then it will continue.  



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Below is a map showing the Old Print Works B12 9AH.  Click on view larger map to see how far you are from me.  If you’re more than 15 minutes then don’t worry I can still help you.  If you are within reasonable distance of a train station then I will come by train if possible and by car if necessary.



Consumers want to buy off businesses that are ethical and sustainable.  Tell me what makes your business great, and we will work together to make it greener and more profitable.


  • Honest, practical expert advice on decarbonising your business
  • Independent and impartial 
  • What are the right measures for you?
  • Site visits, video meetings, thermal imaging
  • Energy saving and renewable energy
  • Energy procurement
  • Monitoring and reporting
  • Payment by instalments available







  • Honest, practical expert advice
  • Independent and impartial 
  • Tell me about your home 
  • What are the right measures for you?
  • Site visits, Zoom meetings, thermal imaging
  • Payment by instalments available



Do you want to make your home greener but don’t know where to start?  Maybe you are thinking about insulation, solar or a heat pump?  Book one of my energy saving advice packages  for honest, practical and impartial advice on how to make your home greener.  I help you to make big decisions about the energy efficiency of your home in a psychologically safe space.


  • Thermal imaging is available depending on the time of year – November-April is best for thermal imaging – if you book outside of these times then I will come back in the winter to do thermal imaging for you.


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Are you ready to be energy confident?

We face a Climate Emergency – you can make a difference




Phil with laptop





“What do you want to do about climate change?”



You’re here because you know that government and big business should do more, but you don’t want to wait for them.  You’re committed to do whatever you can.

What will you do next?  What help do you need from me?

Tell me about your home or your business, and I will advise you on a whole-building plan, looking at all the fabric of the building and its appliances.  I will show you how the ways people live, work, sleep, relax, wash, cook and eat in your building cause it to waste energy and water.  I will show you the right things you can do for your home, your family or co-workers, and for the planet.  I will also tell you if you’re doing any of the wrong things, and show you how to make changes.  


Working with me will give you:

  • Clarity on where to begin
  • Confidence that you are taking the right actions for your building
  • Cost-effective use of your money and resources
  • Carbon savings by implementing the right measures and monitoring their effectiveness.

Contact me now and let’s get you energy confident.

Phil Beardmore FRSA AIEMA, Low Carbon Coach and Founder, Energy Confidence 


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Read what my clients say about me on Trustpilot, or leave a review.

My Trustpilot reviews








woman reading book


Tell me about your home and I will help you make the right choices with confidence.  If you’re considering investing money in the energy efficiency of your home, then I recommend an on-site advice package.  



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Schools and public sector


 If you’re considering investing in the energy efficiency of your building, then with my help you will be able to target your investment in ways that will help you get the greatest CO2 savings while achieving best value for money.



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man making coffee in shop



Consumers like to buy from ethical businesses.  Reducing your environmental impact is good for your reputation, as well as your bottom line. 



Small biz

Large biz

woman in office round


Your stakeholders and funders expect you to be environmentally friendly.  You need a few days expert help to do the right thing.  If you are considering investing your funds in the energy efficiency of your cooperative, charity or social enterprise, then I recommend  an on-site package.  For non-profits with fewer than 250 employees.


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Nathalie Rush

Nathalie Rush

Phil is truly an expert in his field. I can understand why most people around the West Midlands choose to go to Phil for energy-saving consultancy. Phil has a thorough understanding of energy conservation and sustainable living. Would highly recommend.  Nathalie Rush, MD, Six Star Insulation.

Claire Spencer

Claire Spencer

His knowledge of community-led sustainability is second to none, and his perspective on local and national issues is invaluable to us. He adds value, and is everything a good consultant should be, and I would recommend him to anyone in our field  Claire Spencer, Sustainable Moseley.

Rosemary Coyne

Rosemary Coyne

It has been hugely inspiring to work with Phil.  While others talk, Phil gets on and does it.  Rosemary Coyne, Coordinator, Sustainable Housing Action Partnership

Ray Walker

Ray Walker

In working with Phil I have been impressed by his level of knowledge and enthusiasm. He has a vast array of contacts and has brought us into contact with other stakeholder in the energy business that would have been much more difficult to achieve without him. I am also struck by his commitment to supporting communities and the most vulnerable client groups.

Ray Walker, Disability Resource Centre

Karen McCarthy

Cllr Karen McCarthy

Phil Beardmore has a long association with Localise West Midlands and is a valued associate on environmental, housing and fuel poverty projects. 

He works with us both as an individual practitioner and leading multi-disciplinary teams on larger projects, delivering high quality results on time and on budget.

 Cllr Karen McCarthy, Localise West Midlands 



Canal smiling



You need impartial expert advice on energy saving in your home or business.  I don’t want you to lose opportunities to save energy because you missed out on my expertise.


I am one of life’s doers.  I like to work out what to do next, and then get on and do it.

If I see something that needs to change, I will say it needs changing, and I will change it if I can.

I deliver on my promises, on time and within budget.


I don’t “chase the money”.

I am not afraid to give bad news.  If I think something isn’t going to work for you, I will tell you, and suggest alternatives.  I want you to get it right.

I prefer cooperation over competition.  I want everyone to win at life.  


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Sign up for the Energy Confidence newsletter today.

I will send you occasional updates, you can unsubscribe at any time.





Membership of the AECB – Association of Environmentally Conscious Buildings – enables me to keep my skills up to date

making birmingham green

I won a Making Birmingham Greener Award for Outstanding Personal Achievement.

green leader

I was nominated twice by my peers as one of the top Green Leaders in the West Midlands


RSA Fellowship connects me with other progressive people doing great work in many fields


Some photos on this website by Levitt Bernstein, Elementa, Passivhaus Trust and Etude commissioned by West Oxfordshire, Cotswold and Forest of Dean District Councils, funded by the LGA Housing Advisers Programme under a Creative Commons Licence

credit union statement


Energy confidence


I was not at all surprised to read a recent report from Citizens’ Advice which said that homeowners who want to fit energy saving measures, do not wish to take out unsecured loans to fund them.

My experience is that able-to-pay homeowners see energy saving measures as a home improvement project, to be funded as they would normally fund a home improvement, e.g. through savings, or existing credit lines.  They aren’t looking for separate “retrofit loans”.

Low-income homeowners may not have access to easy finance.  Credit unions are very important providers of loans to low income householders.  But no credit union is going to loan the type of money that people need for whole-house energy saving measures with long repayment periods.  It’s too risky.  (I am vice-Chair of Citysave credit union and this is my personal view!).

The idea of ‘retrofit’ as a separate process from home improvement, is a concept that mainly exists in the heads of people in the energy world.  The word ‘retrofit’ has little currency outside of this bubble.  No householder has ever asked me for advice on ‘retrofit’.  But I regularly get asked for advice on energy saving measures as part of a home improvement.

My message to people who think that ‘retrofit loans’ are the way forward is this – there are thousands of homeowners in Birmingham and elsewhere who are thinking of energy saving measures as part of a home improvement.  They aren’t looking for a transaction.  Their next step is looking for impartial advice on how they can make energy saving measures improve their most important asset.  

Those of us who remember the first ‘Green Deal’ (at the time of the Cameron/Clegg government) will remember that there was no appetite for loan finance for energy saving measures.  I was one of a number of people who put our heart and soul into trying to make Birmingham Energy Savers work.  The appetite for energy saving measures has increased exponentially since then – but there is no evidence that anyone wants to borrow money to pay for them.  

(Citizens’ Advice report – click here)



Rep theatre

Energy confidence


One of my earliest memories is going to see a pantomime of Jack and the Beanstalk at the Rep Theatre on a school trip.  So when the Rep Theatre asked me to help them with their energy use just before Christmas, I got the chance to meet Jack himself backstage while I was looking at their heating and cooling controls! 

A lot of my clients have already made some progress with reducing their energy waste, and approach me for practical advice on what to do next.  The Rep were no different.  In fact they had already implemented some of the changes I would have recommended.  So one of my first tasks was to measure the impact of what they had already done.  Imagine their surprise when I told them that they had reduced their energy use on heating and cooling by one half!  Working with their team, I was able to recommend further actions to reduce their running costs and greenhouse gas emissions, and to address the erratic fluctuations in temperature that you get in a 1960s classic of Brutalist architecture made of dense concrete and glass.  After all, I would hate to think of Jack being too cold or too hot at the top of his beanstalk, with only a pair of tights to protect him against the competing bodies of hot and cold air that can result when a building doesn’t have proper control over heating and cooling systems!

If you’re a business or householder that needs honest, practical advice on reducing your greenhouse gas emissions, then please check out my energy advice packages. 

thermal image of heat loss from a church


Energy confidence


Many places of worship are difficult and expensive to keep warm, especially if they are used only intermittently.  Plus heating the worship space is often the biggest single source of greenhouse gas emissions from a church, mosque, mandir, synagogue or gurdwara.

Often I give advice to places of worship who have old heating systems that are based on wet radiators; they are suitable for a home but not for a place of worship with high ceilings, because they don’t get heat where it’s needed.  So the congregation complain of being cold during the winter.  

Sometimes it’s best to consider whether the congregation can move to another space that is easier to heat.  But this isn’t always possible or desirable.

One solution is to heat the person as well as the space.

Some efficient ways of heating the person are:

  • Under-pew heating – this is like a low-temperature electric blanket that goes under fixed pews, and heats the person from below
  • Rechargeable chair cushion heaters, that heat the person where there are individual chairs instead of fixed pews (if you have access to solar panels – either onsite, or offsite, or a solar charger, then you can potentially use solar energy to charge the heaters, as cushion heaters are low-temperature and don’t need much power).  
  • Infra-red heaters.

You should continue to heat the space as well as the person.  If you heat the person, then you need less heat for the space.  If you eliminate space heating altogether, then this can lead to problems with condensation and damp, and cause damage to the building fabric.  It can also cause circulation problems in a wet central heating system if you have short bursts of on/off.

The first video below is a case study from a church that uses rechargeable heaters.



The second video below is a case study from a church that uses under-pew heating.










If you need impartial expert energy saving advice for your place of worship, business or home, please contact me.

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Maggie and Dave are hosting our next Birmingham Green Doors event on 4 March 2023.




I have been there before to give them energy advice, but tonight was the first time I have been back since their green home makeover.







There are many features and benefits I could list but what struck me most was that it was evenly and consistently warm and comfortable throughout.


There are lots of measurements, thermal images, spreadsheets that could prove the carbon impact of what they’ve done. But you need to feel the comfort with your own five senses. This is an early 20th Century Edwardian terrace. They are notoriously leaky and draughty. If you move from one room to another you notice the difference. But not in Maggie and Dave’s house. On a cold January evening, the whole house is warm as toast.

At Maggie and Dave’s open house event on 4 March you will learn about:

  • How wall insulation has not only reduced heat loss, but improved airtightness, whose role in making a house warm or cold is often overlooked
  • The heat pump installer has done their job properly – they have designed flow rates, flow temperatures, and radiator sizing to ensure a steady background heat; with heating controls that are easy to use
  • How they have dealt with heat loss from the extremities of the house, such as the bay window
  • For those who like figures, you will be able to learn how much energy and carbon has been saved
  • Why you need to add ventilation when insulating a home – and how to do it
  • How Maggie and Dave chose and supervised the right contractors for the job


Who should attend?
  • People who are interested in making their home more energy efficient
  • Professionals working in housing and energy who are interested in warm, green homes
  • Community workers who want to help residents save energy
  • Students, teachers and academics interested in decarbonisation.


BOOK NOW!  Three time slots available.  Near Erdington train station, bus routes.


Warm and toasty

Energy confidence


I have been giving householders impartial advice on preventing condensation damp for 25 years.  I have managed advice programmes and raised millions of pounds of funding for energy saving programmes.  Yet here we are in 2023 and the number of people asking me to help them make their homes warmer and more energy efficient is greater than ever.   The problem of condensation damp in homes is getting more widespread, across all income groups.  The way we live in our homes is changing, and so condensation damp is a growing problem.  In this pay-as-you-feel e-book I will take you through the causes of condensation damp, and more importantly, help you to think through some solutions.  


The internet is full of free advice about condensation damp nowadays.  Some good, some bad.  But most of it is tied to the sale of a particular product.  Free doesn’t always mean impartial.  I am independent of any energy company or manufacturer.  So even if I advise someone to use a piece of kit, you can be sure that my advice is truly impartial, and in your best interests, because I am not on commission from anybody.   If you subsequently decide you want to buy an energy advice package from me, then it will similarly be impartial, but you are under no obligation to buy.

There are no quick fixes to condensation damp, but the good news is that there is always something you can do.  If you’re tired of condensation damp in your home then read on. 

This is a pay-as-you-feel product – suggested payment £10.  You will get access to a pdf version with images; a large print plain text version in Lexia font; a condensation action plan template; and my energy saving workbook.



Download now




grandparent with grandchild in kitchen


Energy confidence


“LADS” = Local Authority Delivery Scheme – it’s a grant scheme aimed at installing energy saving measures in low-income households.

Sounds great!  But a number of local authorities have struggled to deliver it.  Including here in the West Midlands.

The biggest single reason is that central government gives local authorities an unrealistic timescale of 12 months to deliver it.

In 12 months, local authorities might have to:

  • set priorities for which homes should be targeted
  • go through a procurement exercise for retrofit assessors and installers
  • promote the availability of the scheme to eligible residents
  • sign up residents and deal with enquiries
  • carry out retrofit assessments
  • deal with drop-outs and objections
  • install the measures
  • complete the paperwork to show that the money has been spent properly.

An additional constraint is that it is high risk to install external wall insulation between October and March, because there is an increased risk of the render finish cracking.  This means you have seven months to deliver the scheme – from April to the end of October – if it involves external wall insulation on solid wall or system-built homes.

It’s no wonder the LADS scheme is so difficult to deliver.  The government should extend the delivery period to at least two years.

One other thing that does need to change is the way expectations of these scheme are managed.  We know from the experience of past schemes such as the Green Deal, that if scheme managers talk big numbers that they can’t deliver, or promise complex measures such as external wall insulation or heat pumps that they can’t realistically deliver, then people will feel let down and will lose trust in the scheme.  Community organisations and activists who want ensure that their neighbours take advantage of the scheme, can find that people’s trust in them is undermined.  The relationship between a community organisation and the people it serves becomes transactional and extractive.  We saw this on past schemes such as the Green Deal.

Sometimes it is better to stop promoting something and withdraw from it.  This is a difficult decision but it is in nobody’s interest to mislead vulnerable residents and to give them false hope.

We should also avoid using terms like “retrofit” in schemes aimed at the general public.  It’s jargon, and most people don’t understand what it means.  


scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions




Energy confidence



Your business has three types of greenhouse gas emissions.

    • Scope 1
      – Burning natural gas, LPG, heating oil in your building; for space heating, domestic hot water, industrial processes
      – Burning transport fuels such as diesel and petrol in vehicles that your business owns.
    • Scope 2
      – Is mainly from energy that you buy; e.g. electricity from the grid; heating or cooling from a district energy system.
    • Scope 3
      – Is emissions that you do not cause directly, but which arise from actions in your value chain. The goods and services that you buy in, have scope 3 emissions. Remote working and staff travel are also examples of scope 3 emissions.

Scope 3 emissions are easy to overlook. I can help you to understand and measure your scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions. Most importantly, I can help you to develop a strategy to manage and reduce your emissions. There is no point understanding your “carbon footprint” for the sake of it.


Consumers want to buy goods and services from businesses that are ethical and sustainable.  Understanding and measuring your scope 1, 2, and 3 emissions means you can prove to your customers that you are serious about greening your business.

If you need my help in reducing your business greenhouse gas emissions, please contact me now.  

Photo – me helping a business with their scope 1, 2, 3 emissions (credit – Richard Beard).


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