Thermal Camera Loan Scheme

How to borrow a thermal imaging camera

The Council has launched a scheme whereby a local Parish Council or Community Group can borrow up to three thermal imaging cameras. Those cameras can then be used, when requested by a local resident, to identify any heat losses from your home.

How does the scheme work?

The Cameras can not be borrowed by individual households. Instead, a local Parish Council or Community Group asks to borrow one or more cameras, for one to four weeks. Representatives of that Council or Group then organises a way for residents who want their home to be surveyed to get in touch with them. It will be up to each Parish Council or Community Group to set up the precise arrangements for registering an interest in a visit, and how and when visits are undertaken.

During December 2022, Witchford Climate Action Group (external link) were the first Group to trial the scheme, and organising visits throughout that month for residents of Witchford. Since then, several other parish councils or community groups have borrowed one or more cameras. 

Can I register an interest now?

If you are a Parish Council or Community Group with an interest in borrowing one or more cameras, then please see the application form (PDF) or get in touch via

If you are a local resident interested in a visit, then please ask your local Parish Council or, if there is one, your local community group, to see if they are aware of this scheme and whether they have registered an interest to borrow a camera. As a reminder, the cameras are not available for individual borrowing direct from East Cambridgeshire District Council. 

Cameras will generally be made available from November to Easter each year. Cameras only work well when the weather outside is cold, such as below 10C, and when your home is relatively warm. The colder the weather outside, the better the results.

What will the thermal imaging camera show me?

The camera looks and operates very similar to a normal digital camera, or the camera on your smartphone. However, rather than a normal camera image, you will see a range of colours from dark blue to bright reds and yellows. Darker colours indicate cold spots, whilst the brighter reds, oranges and yellows show warm spots.

So, if you are inside a home, the darker colours are highlighting where heat is being lost to the outside. If you are outside your home, the brighter colours are showing you where heat is being lost from your home.

I have had a visit, where can I go to for more help?

If you are interested in knowing how to reduce heat loss from your home, please visit our Energy Efficiency help pages, which includes tips on what you can do as well as grants that may be available. Alternatively, please visit our shared advice service Action on Energy (external link), including advice on how to maximise the energy efficiency of your home, save money on energy bills and cut carbon emissions. It also details funding opportunities and support to find an installer.