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2016 Mount Alexander Heritage Awards - Recognising the value of heritage and sustainability

Lesley and Ian

Winners of the 2014 Mount Alexander Shire Heritage Award for sustainability Lesley Wright and Ian Jones are encouraging others to nominate for this year's awards.

Monday 8 February 2016

A 159 year-old brick cottage is not the architectural style that usually comes to mind when imagining environmental sustainability, but Ian Jones and Lesley Wright have managed to transform their cold and draughty nineteenth-century house into an environmentally efficient and cosy home.

Ian and Lesley won the 2014 Mount Alexander Heritage Award for sustainability for a renovation and refurbishment to their Castlemaine home.

“The project was hard work, so winning the award reinforced to us that it was special and worthwhile,” said Lesley.

The couple are encouraging others to nominate heritage projects around the Shire for the next round of awards.

“The awards are a great way to showcase that heritage projects are both feasible and doable,” said Ian.

“Particularly in relation to sustainability, the more people who become aware that modern solutions can be sensitively incorporated into old homes means these projects will become more common, and older homes more energy efficient,” he said.

The couple installed wall, floor and ceiling insulation, photovoltaic solar power and solar hot water. They also sealed the building to prevent draughts and installed a heat exchanger as part of the one year project.

“When we began this project there wasn’t much interest in making ‘green’ changes, but fortunately that seems to have changed now,” said Lesley.

The judges’ decision was based on the unobtrusive manner in which modern solutions had been applied to a heritage home, whilst retaining its architectural character.

Nominations for the 2016 Mount Alexander Heritage Awards are open in six categories including:
• Creative reuse and contemporary design in a heritage place
• Incorporation of sustainability principles in heritage restoration/adaptation
• Specialist heritage trade skills
• Heritage advocacy
• Adaptation and conservation of historic commercial spaces
• Restoration of a heritage place

Nominations close on Friday 4 March. To learn more about the awards or to make a nomination visit http://mountalexanderheritageawards.com.au.

Mount Alexander Shire Heritage Awards acknowledges its sponsors, Pyrenees Quarries, Maldon and District Community Bank and Regional Management Group.

IMAGE: Lesley and Ian at their Castlemaine home.

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