The Loftus Hotel in Junee will receive a $56,931 Heritage Near Me Green Energy Grant to improve energy efficiency and reduce power bills, Member for Cootamundra Steph Cooke announced today.

Ms Cooke said the project is one of 24 projects across NSW that will share $1.5 million in grants to provide for energy efficiencies in state and locally listed heritage items.

“The Loftus Hotel is such an iconic building in the heart of Junee, and with its enormity and age comes unique challenges for energy supply,” Ms Cooke said.

“This grant will allow the installation of active and passive temperature control to make sure the hotel can remain comfortable year round.

“The hotel will have new roof insulation installed which will make a big difference whether it’s hot or cold outside, while awnings on the car park side, which faces the summer sun, will keep that heat off windows,” Ms Cooke added.

As well as these passive temperature control methods, the hotel will also receive new split-system air conditioning units.

“These units will be able to provide heating and cooling to complement the insulation, which means come summer or winter it’ll be a comfortable place to be.

“These Green Energy Grants recognise that energy efficiency can be challenging for heritage items because building age, materials, type of construction, size, shape and site orientation all play a role in how heritage buildings perform,” Ms Cooke added.

Annette Pollard, of the Loftus Unit Trust, said the upgrades will increase comfort and reduce energy consumption.

“We’ve already put in 20 or so air conditioners, but this grant means every room will have air conditioning,” Ms Pollard said.

“There are four windows on the car park side and they get really hot, so there’ll be awnings on each of those windows.

“We’ll also have LED lighting on all of the exit and safety warning signs.

“We have about 35 people living in the Loftus, including families, and they’ll be much more comfortable, and it also means our energy usage will be reduced,” Ms Pollard added.

Ms Cooke said the Heritage Near Me Green Energy Grant scheme is improving a wide range of much cherished buildings.

“I am delighted that 75% of the 24 successful projects are in regional areas including in former banks, historic homesteads, churches and convents,” Ms Cooke said.

“Funded projects include lighting upgrades, insulation and solar system installations.

“To be eligible for the grant, applicants were required to complete a training program and develop a tailored business case, including professionally verified anticipated savings.

“Heritage items involved in the grant must be listed on a local council’s local environment plan (LEP) and/or the State Heritage Register.

“This program is another example of the NSW Government working to reduce power bills, greenhouse gas emissions and the generating grid load,” Ms Cooke added.

To read more about the Heritage Near Me program go to www.environment.nsw.gov.au/heritage-near-me