Millions of households across the UK are unable to afford to heat their homes effectively and the rising cost of fuel is steadily pushing more and more households into fuel poverty.

In an attempt to combat this problem, the government has announced £3 million in funding that is to be divided between 38 community groups dedicated to installing renewable forms of heating.

The announcement was made by Energy and Climate Change Minister Greg Barker, who commented: "We need to transform the way we heat our homes to help keep bills down and cut carbon too.

"Community groups, with their enthusiasm, local knowledge and drive, need to be at the very heart of this revolution so it’s great to see so many groups across Great Britain getting on board."

The funding comes from the Renewable Heat Premium Payment communities scheme, which was launched in April of this year. The scheme aims to get new community projects off the ground and support pre-existing  projects, helping save people money on bills and providing low carbon heating alternatives to cut emissions.

It is estimated that this funding will mean some 1,250 homes across the country will be able to install some form of renewable heating.

Eligible technologies for funding under this scheme include biomass boilers, solar thermal panels, ground source heat pumps, air to water source heat pumps and water to water source heat pumps. Community-based organisations including community co-operatives, voluntary groups, social enterprises and development trusts were eligible to apply for funding.

Chair of the Transition Network Peter Lipman said: "I'm delighted that DECC, working with community representatives, have developed a scheme which has moved away from communities competing against each other towards encouraging and supporting collaboration between the communities taking part in this scheme, with many different models and huge amounts of innovation."

It is hoped that this scheme will encourage even more groups to look towards renewables.

"The challenges we face are going to require many more collaborative efforts between governments, councils, communities and householders," concluded Mr Lipman.