Light Fantastic, Big Wheel, Nottingham

Nottingham City Council

Light Fantastic, Big Wheel, Nottingham


Visitors:                                                    approx 1200

Bulbs distributed:                                       2520

PowerDown Units distributed:                      160

CO2 saved (lifetime):                                   361,157 kg

Retained economic benefit (lifetime):            £131,326

The Big Wheel is essentially a re-branded green event, and what an impact the difference has. There was a massive turn out to the event will all cross-sections of the community attending. We managed to secure a great location near the entrance, and this had an instant impact – we were busy from the word go!

Luckily we had two volunteers as well as the two staff from the Council to assist. We had queues for the light-bulbs, general assistance and for the energy bike. We were able to help a number of people out who had changes all but their halogen and dimmer switch bulbs, but largely most people had not got to this stage yet.

The Council officers also brought along a number of giveaways, cloth bags, water saving devices, pens, food savers and staple less staplers. This was just as well as the PowerDowns had all gone by 11am and the bulbs by 12.30. We were able to get children to commit to being energy monitors for their own homes as well as also distributing carbon foot-printing and tops sheets. Matt from the council commented that he had spoken to more people in the morning, in more depth than he had at all the year’s previous events put together.

In the afternoon we were able to give more in depth feedback and assistance to visitors, promoting energy monitors and dealing with some tricky questions about LEDs (one of which was answered by my twelve year old son!). One visitor would not change to CFLs on health and safety grounds as they did not come on quick enough and he might end up falling down the stairs. It was pointed out to him the health and safety issues with getting on a chair 15 times to change incandescent bulbs and also that he could opt for a higher wattage CFL. He left happy with this solution.

We also dealt with many enquiries about solar panels – thermal and PV. We also promoted feed in tariffs which were unknown to most.

All in this was a fantastic event, with a great attendance. Many left very switched on.

Light Fantastic, Erewash Canal Festival

Erewash Borough Council

Light Fantastic, Erewash Canal Festival


Visitors:                                                     approx 700

Bulbs distributed:                                        1480

PowerDown Units distributed:                      120

CO2 saved (lifetime):                                    212,303

Retained economic benefit (lifetime):             £81,553

Spread over a large area, it was hard to gauge numbers at this event, however we had a steady stream of interest and at times people were four deep at the trailer. The energy bike was again very popular, today we set them a challenge of lighting up five low energy bulbs including a very flash GU10 LED. The event turned out to be so busy that we had given away all the PowerDowns and bulbs by around 13.00.

It being a canal festival (but not a boat in sight!) we had a lot of interest from boat owners wishing to change lights over to LED and power their boats on PV. Interestingly the consensus was the wind turbines were not effective enough at such a low level to generate consistent electricity. One chap was even hoping to power his washing machine and dishwasher with a PV array…I suggested some alternative solutions!

We had a visit from the mayoral party who disappointingly did not want to jump on the energy bike, but were very interested in the PowerDowns and wider use of low energy lighting.

The biggest shock of the day was to find that a number of people in the borough appear to be incorrectly on Economy 7 metres, or have been mis-sold inappropriate tariffs by their suppliers. We were able to advise on how to seek out alternatives and switch their tariffs. 

Having given most of the energy efficiency items away in the morning we were able to concentrate on giving detailed advice to individuals and families.

Kay Kent was representing the council at the event and her assistance and grants advice was invaluable.

Light Fantastic, Stapleford Carnival

Broxtowe Borough Council

Light Fantastic, Stapleford Carnival


Visitors:                                                    approx 700

Bulbs distributed:                                       1440

Powerdown Units distributed:                      120

CO2 saved (lifetime):                                  206,589

Retained economic benefit (lifetime):           £79,900

This was a large and well attended event which was slow to build but had a busy afternoon. The energy bike was particularly popular with the children and some dads, and we could have made a mint charging for rides on it! It was useful to have the EST stall next door as there were able to help a few people out with boiler grant enquiries.

We had a visit from the local Labour MP who received a bespoke training session on low energy lighting – he has had a number of queries about this issue recently and wasn’t really sure how to respond. We spend ten minutes going through the issues and he was sent away with factsheets and further information to help with his responses.

The local church were also very appreciative of advice and help and were given bulbs to hand out to their congregation on the Sunday following the event.

There was particular interest in the LED GU10 that we had on display and a number of people had changed most of their bulbs and just had the ones on dimmers and GU10s left to change. They were grateful to hear of places to source their replacements bulbs.

Finally it is interesting to note that as a more of the increase in understanding and willingness to change bulbs over, were had a curiously large number of enquiries from people wishing to change lights on their cooker hoods and in their fridges. Lyco and Efficient Light will be getting a lot of curious enquiries.

Saturday 5th was a great show and Andy and Marice’s assistance was invaluable.

Carbon footprinting stall, Energy Expo, West Bridgford

LAEP Communications Pick n Mix

Rushcliffe Borough Council                        

Carbon footprinting stall, Energy Expo, West Bridgford


Visitors:                                  over 100

Footprints completed:               20

Highest footprint:                      33,680kg

Lowest footprint:                       5,468kg

Average footprint:                      2,374kg

While it was quiet at the beginning of the day, we visited all the other stallholders and left them each with a carbon footprinting form. Several returned these towards the end of the day. One man in particular was rather shocked at his large footprint, but explained it mostly due to his high mileage travelling the country selling renewable energy products!

We had many interesting conversations during the day, including one that started with a visitor asserting that he didn’t have a carbon footprint because he “never went anywhere”. He eventually sat down to fill out a form and discovered his footprint was quite large despite not having been on any flights recently. Discussions with other visitors covered topics including the lack of funding for solid wall insulation, energy efficiency ratings for household appliances, the carbon ethics of cannibalism and the need to cut down on all travel, even travel by public transport.

Many more people took away footprinting forms to complete at home, and factsheets on renewable energy were also flying off the shelves. It was useful to have both Rushcliffe Borough Council and the Energy Saving Trust at the event, as we were able to signpost people for more local information, and advice on grant funding and insulation.

Carbon Footprinting, Council Offices, Worksop

LAEP Communications Pick n Mix

Bassetlaw District Council

Carbon Footprinting, Council Offices, Worksop


Visitors:                                                approx 25, 18 footprints calculated

Highest footprint:                                    35,233kg

Lowest footprint:                                     7,269kg

Average footprint:                                   12,203 kg   

Friday was a relatively quiet footprinting day at the Council Offices, but we had a reasonable flow of visitors and lots of interesting in-depth conversations about climate change and carbon emissions. Most footprints calculated were for staff at the Council, though we did also catch up with a few visiting members of the public.

Several people who found that they had higher than average footprints seemed to be quite deeply shocked and concerned about their high emissions. Many visitors found that despite insulating their homes and switching off lights, their footprints were huge as a result of flights or high car mileage. They were then faced with a very difficult dilemma about giving up holidays and travel to reduce their carbon emissions.

Another key issue raised during the day was the difficulty of making quick changes to lifestyles or properties. On a positive note, a few people explained that they had plans to install new boilers, cavity wall insulation or more efficient appliances, as soon as they had the cash available or other building work completed. 

As well as calculating footprints, we gave out some free lightbulbs and certificates, plus advice and information about insulation, renewable energy and recycling. The carbon footprinting stall was well supported by a display on sustainability, and awareness raising amongst council staff during the week, through emails and the intranet. The council employee with the lowest footprint was genuinely delighted to win a prize of a local food hamper at the end of the day.