Energy advice surgeries

Community Energy Efficiency Toolkit

Holding public energy advice surgeries is a common activity for communities, however it can be labour-intensive.

Useful for:

  • People on low incomes
  • People in fuel poverty
  • Elderly people
  • People for whom there is a language barrier
  • Most other audiences
  • Visually impaired people

Benefits of this approach

People respond better to face-to-face advice than remote advice (such as leaflets or calls) alone. Many groups use public advice stands and talks to groups to raise awareness and drive uptake of deeper engagement activities. They can raise visibility of energy advisers among a target audience, making advice surgeries useful as a precursor to home visits. If people bring energy bills with them they can receive accurate, tailored advice.

This activity can be delivered by volunteers, although a reasonable level of knowledge about energy efficiency is required. Due to time and resource-intensity funding may be required to deliver a good service.

Download the full ‘Energy advice surgeries’ module of the Community Energy Efficiency Toolkit.

Download an overview of how communities have delivered advice surgeries under the Big Lottery's Communities Living Sustainably programme.


Further info

Also see the ‘Communications and engagement’ section of the Hub for ideas on promotion.

Energy Saving Trust domestic energy saving advice pages

Energy Saving Trust also developed the Community Home Energy Check advice tool.

Sustainable Sunderland gave energy saving presentations to themed groups such as the Women’s Institute, MIND, lunch clubs and in care homes.

One Planet Middlesbrough held public advice stands in public places such as the bus station, giving out energy saving light bulbs as incentives to attract customers. They also delivered one-to-one sessions in community venues, welfare and debt advice drop-in centres.

Sustain Eden ran drop-in sessions at various community venues including libraries.

Community Energy England have produced a report about fuel poverty and what community energy is doing about it.



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