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The Wilberforce Trust is a charity dedicated to helping and empowering those with sight and hearing loss and impairment in the York and North Yorkshire area to live fulfilling and independent lives. The Trust had tenants in community based supported housing and family homes around York but wanted to deliver an innovative ‘extra care’ housing scheme designed especially for people with a visual impairment and other disabilities; the first of its kind in the area.

Wilberforce House offers 30 one-bed, open-plan purpose-built, self-contained apartments along with a Living & Learning Zone – providing education and leisure activities – a courtyard cafe and offices for the Trust itself, all set in four acres of accessible landscaped gardens, including a large sensory garden.  The apartments utilise smart home and assistive technology personalised to their lifestyle needs.

A consultant was employed to review the development’s plans with regard to fire safety.  His report included recommendations for additional fire safety measures including the ability for cooker hobs to be switched off by an alarm, as kitchen fires are a significant risk with 50% of all accidental house fires starting in the kitchen.


The Firechief Kitchen Stove Guard was the chosen solution as it provides a worry-free approach to managing cooker top safety without affecting cooking. The Kitchen Stove Guard does this by alerting the user of pre-fire conditions and if no action is taken, it automatically turns off the electricity supply to the cooker. The intelligent heat sensor in the Kitchen Stove Guard tracks the rate of increasing temperature, as a steeply rising temperature is an indication of a developing fire hazard.


The fitting of the Firechief Kitchen Stove Guard solution brought a number of benefits to Wilberforce House:

  • Intelligent fire safety technology which prevents fires long before they can start. The heat sensor activates the cooker switch when pre-fire conditions are detected instead of reacting to extinguish a fire once it has actually begun
  • Continuous 24/7 protection for peace of mind. The device monitors and adapts to the occupiers cooking style
  • Easier and simpler installation - undertaken by the electrical contractors already working on site
  • No annual maintenance required
  • No monthly testing - automatic fault diagnosis constantly analyses the Kitchen Stove Guard’s function when the hob is in use
  • Lower cost – less than half the cost of a fire suppression system
  • Fulfils the requirements of Stove Guard Standard BS EN 50615
  • 2-year warranty

To learn more about the Firechief Kitchen Stove Guard, visit the the Firechief Kitchen Stove Guard product website

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The information contained within this blog is provided solely for general informational and educational purposes and is not intended as a substitute for professional advice. Before taking any actions based upon this information, we advise the reader to consult any and all relevant statutory or regulatory guidance and where felt necessary to consult a qualified fire or industry regulation professional. The use or reliance on any information contained herein is solely at the reader’s risk.