A Modern take on a district heating scheme

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Ground Source Heat pumps are a very clever and currently ‘trendy’ approach to residential heating – watch any program like Grand Designs and there is a good chance that you will see a large trench being filled with pipes! The concept is simple, extract heat from the ground to enhance the heating system in the property and thereby reduce costs.    

The basic concept


However, this has tended to be only a practical approach for new builds due to the land requirement for the system’s installation.      

It is therefore good to see that Mansfield Council may trial green heating in Fifty-five properties in the New England Way area of Mansfield. The properties concerned are currently heated by the council’s district heating scheme. The council said it will now consult people living in the area before deciding to go ahead with the trial.      

District Heating Schemes were popular in the 70’s and 80’s  and fifteen schemes were installed in the Mansfield area more than 25 years ago, with three-quarters using coal-fired boilers (based on the coal mining in the area) and the others gas.  These district heating systems are getting tired and the Council have been working on plans for a long-term replacement for sometime.      

A council spokesman said;      

“We hope other householders in the district will also be able to see the benefits of this new type of heating at first hand and consider installing their own systems.”      

If the trial proves successful, the authority would consider converting all 1,630 properties on the coal-powered heating schemes to ground source heating. The new form of heating would also cut CO2 emissions and reduce bills for tenants and homeowners.  

This is an excellent idea and a good take on an old idea – the heat taken from the ground is free and improves the areas green credentials – always a good thing!


2 thoughts on “A Modern take on a district heating scheme

    inafutureage said:
    September 9, 2010 at 2:01 pm

    I think neighborhood energy systems have a lot of potential in new decades, for one big issue: cost. Many systems like geothermal require capital investment but pay off. With the help of town financing, projects that fed neighborhoods with heat, wind, and solar energy could become big. In the US it would be a sea change.

      Simon Dare responded:
      September 9, 2010 at 2:18 pm

      Totally agree, and with the high density development in the UK over the last few decades this type of scheme can be the only practical answer.

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