Case study: Sara Cox

Sara Cox, the radio and television presenter, admits she's "not great" when it comes to monitoring the heating controls at the semi-detached, five-bedroom Edwardian home in Willesden, north London, that she shares with her partner and two children.

"I'm hopeless with timers," she says. "I was brought up on a farm so I'm of the 'put on a jumper' school. I don't mind a cold house, but my partner likes to crank the heating up."

Cox recognises that there is plenty of scope in her home to take some easy energy-saving steps: the loft "doesn't really have any insulation"; the hallway is the "only place where we have an eco-lightbulb"; and "we need to turn off the underfloor heating in our spare bathroom". But, she says, she just needs some guidance on the most efficient alternatives. "I'm really good at turning off lights, it's a working-class thing. But which eco-lightbulbs should I buy instead?"

Over transportation, she says the decision-making gets chewier. The family owns two cars – a Lexus RX400h hybrid and an Audi RS4 – that are used for the school run ("we now half-drive, half-walk"), going "up north" ("if it's for work I get the train"), and weekend trips. "But we don't really fly that often now," she says. "And once [child] number three comes along next year, that will be it – except for our trip to France, which we really love."

Cox is a keen recycler, but concedes she would be reluctant to give up meat for the 10:10 campaign: "My dad is a beef farmer so he wouldn't be best pleased. I tried going veggie once, but it lasted about four hours."