Bromford, Pleydells

Ground Source Review Bromford, The Pleydells - Ground Works

Ground Source Review: Bromford, The Pleydells.

Another impressive case study from the growing portfolio of collaborations between Kensa Contracting and Bromford Housing Association is this 33 unit scheme at The Pleydells, consisting of 12 flats and 21 bungalows.

  • Shortlisted: Best Customer Impact Award (NHMF Awards 2018)
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Ground Source Review: Bromford, The Pleydells

The heating upgrade at The Pleydells features individual Shoebox ground source heat pumps installed within each property and connected to shared ground loops. The project is Kensa Contracting’s largest single scheme to date with Bromford, and was completed during Autumn 2017.


System Architecture

Kensa’s borehole shared ground loop array architecture employed at The Pleydells is classified as a district heating system under the definition set by Ofgem, and allows Bromford Housing to receive funding through the ECO and also the Non Domestic RHI (this scheme has closed).

Due to the Pleydells rural off gas location, the ground source heating upgrade replaced ageing direct electric storage heating systems. The scheme will relieve tenants from fuel poverty by significantly reducing fuel cost but also considerably improving quality of life by providing comfortable, controllable heat for the residents, which is cheap to run and simple to control.

David Broom, Technical Sales Manager at Kensa comments:

Fuel poverty is a significant issue in the UK, as is the scandal of excess winter deaths, which occur every year due to under heated homes. The high cost and poor effectiveness of heating via direct electric heating is a primary contributor, which is particularly relevant in rural off gas areas.

The use of micro-district GSHP’s makes the roll out in small rural communities viable where alternative forms of heater are not viable.


Ground conditions

Due to the potential for artesian conditions at greater depths the site featured a greater number of shallower boreholes compared to most installations. This increased the requirement for trenching works but the open nature of the site ensured minimal disruption to residents. To reduce the time for the drilling operation two drilling rigs were used simultaneously at opposite ends of the site resulting in 33 boreholes being completed in just five weeks.



The Pleydells’ micro-district ground source heat network enables tenants to benefit from the lowest possible running cost, and choose their own preferred supplier as the individual heat pump is connected directly to the individual tenant’s supply. This also means tenants are able to shop around for the cheapest possible deal rather than being forced to buy heat from the building owner as with traditional central plant district heating systems.

Tenant surveys have revealed a 100% satisfaction rate for the ground source heat pump upgrade at the Pleydells. Residents are experiencing evidenced running cost reductions of 30-50%, saving £300-£450 per year whilst also allowing for whole house heating.  The ability to control the heating system provides a significant benefit as the tenant now has time and temperature control, as well as room by room control through TRV’s. Switching to flat rate electricity reduces the cost of day to day use of electricity, further contributing to running cost savings.

Paul Barlow, Bromford’s Building Surveyor for Investment Delivery South comments:

The drilling and ground work trenching works went very well with the three teams and as usual feedback from our customers was great. The team worked safely, cleanly and quickly; the trenching contractor even purchased a mower so he could cut the long grass to ensure a better fit of the replaced lifted turf on the trenches which housed the ground array horizontal pipes!

The internal works went extremely well too, again with good customer feedback – 100% scores on official feedback results!

Happy customers

Tenant’s have been keen to share their feedback on their new Kensa ground source heat pump system:

Love the new heating!

Heating property very well – even better than gas central heating I have had on other properties. Lower bills, too. I am recommending the system to others!

Heating is excellent – far better than our old system.

Everyone polite and helpful, very pleased with the heating.

Really good efficient heating and economical too – best heating I have ever had, and I’ve been in various properties!


  • Total scheme cost = £397,904
  • Projected Non Domestic RHI income = £562,801 (this scheme has closed)
  • ECO contribution = £52,101.

Key Facts

  • 33 unit scheme
  • 100% tenant satisfaction scores
  • 6kW Shoebox Twin heat pump in each property
  • Replacing night storage heaters
  • Funded by Non Domestic RHI (this scheme has closed) & ECO
  • Shared ground loop array system

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