• Caoilin Rafferty
  • 2 min read

Dermot Bannon helps a family in Portrane in North County Dublin to embark on a Deep Retrofit Project

The Lynders Family with architect Dermot Bannon

Sisters Marion and Anne Lynders from Portmarnock, County Dublin appeared on RTE’s Room to Improve in 2018. They had many heated exchanges with architect Dermot Bannon.

The sisters, who had lived abroad, decided to move back into their childhood home.This was with their 81-year-old mother and Anna’s son, Michael.

Their family home was built more than 100 years ago and so needed major renovation. “In winter we had to manoeuvre ourselves close to the fire. When you sat there, only one part of you would be warm and your back would be freezing. The heat just didn’t seem to circulate,” says Anne.

Dermot drew up a design that made the most of the sea views. One of the major issues debated was costs. However, Quantity Surveyor, Lisa O’Brien was at hand to advise the sisters to take up an SEAI Deep Retrofit grant.

The funding from the scheme helped transform their poor energy rated home. It improved to the standard of a brand new A-rated house in terms of energy performance.

After the work was complete, the home was transformed into a warm, modern and cosy seaside cottage. “With the retrofit done, for the first time, I have come to know what warmth feels like”, says Anne.

One quarter of Ireland’s energy-related CO2 emissions are generated by our inefficient housing stock. Over 1 million homes are below a C energy rating. In addition, 98% of home heating is sourced from fossil fuels.

This means that many people are spending a lot of money trying to heat cold, damp and often unhealthy homes. The Deep Retrofit Pilot Programme was designed to further assess these challenges and opportunities.