Ground Source Review: New build multiple housing flats shared ground loop array - Shropshire rural housing - Grand opening

A development of 12 affordable homes in a quiet Somerset village was the recent focus for a large opening celebration, in honour of its efforts to sustainably connect the community to lower cost housing and energy.

Unveiled on the 13th September 2018, the mixed development of 1-bedroom flats and 3 and 2-bedroom semi-detached houses and bungalows, was met with enthusiasm from the local community for its contribution to much-needed local, affordable, energy-efficient housing.

Donna Johnson, Chief Executive of South Western Housing Society, explains:

South Western Housing Society is very proud of its new development in Mark, which is an example of our approach to working in partnership with organisations to achieve the common goal of providing more housing for those in need in local communities.

Our commitment to providing good quality, high performing homes is one of the golden threads that runs through our business. It is testament to the project teams open relationship that we have been able to deliver these affordable homes and help families stay connected to their local area.

The developers of the homes in Mark took the brief to connect local families to the local area quite literally, employing the services of Cornish ground source heat pump manufacturer, Kensa Heat Pumps, and their delivery partner Kensa Contracting, to utilise the freely-occurring heat available in the ground as a source for guaranteed heat and hot water to the new properties.

Paul Davies, Senior Surveyor at developers of Tuckers Close, E G Carter & Co Ltd, says:

This has been a fantastic advertisement for collaborative working to deliver these beautiful new homes to the village of Mark. The new homes are excellent examples of great design and the embodiment of modern technology to ensure they sit well with the local character and tradition. The properties’ Kensa ground source heat pumps will bring the community and South Western Housing Society long term benefits as well as reduced energy bills and happy tenants.

E G Carter & Co Ltd certainly look forward to the opportunity of working with Kensa Heat Pumps again in the future.

Each dwelling at Tuckers Close features a Kensa Shoebox ground source heat pump, which is connected to a shared ground loop array (SGLA); a system consisting of a 100-120m deep borehole connected to clusters of typically two properties.

The SGLA configuration allows South Western Housing Society to offset the ground source heat pump costs via income through the Non Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive (this scheme has closed).

The design also gives the local homeowners heating independence, with control over their own energy use, and their own electricity bill; running costs savings of 48.4% are expected compared to the alternative of LPG in the off-gas grid area.

By choosing to install a non-combustion heat source in the form of ground source heat pumps, as opposed to LPG or gas, over the systems 40 year lifetime the development in Mark is expected to have prevented the equivalent of over 132kg of harmful local NOx emissions, and 539 tonnes of CO2, with a SAP rating of 87-90B.

Colin Powell, Director at gcp Chartered Architects explains:

gcp have developed a number of low energy and low carbon housing projects that utilise ground source heat pumps as an effective way to substantially reduce carbon emissions and meet planning requirements for sustainable new homes. We feel that Kensa’s GSHP solution offers clients an easy to use, low maintenance technology, that helps to deliver affordable homes for the future.

David Broom of Kensa Contracting says:

Tuckers Close is a fantastic example of how GSHP’s can be used in new build development to provide the best possible outcome for all stakeholders. The tenants receive comfortable, controllable heating at a cost lower than mains gas, despite being in an off gas area. The developer provides a building that, thanks to the efficiency of the heat pump, provides a low carbon solution, which meets the planning sustainability requirement by delivering over 20% on site renewables, and the client has a reliable, low lifetime cost heating solution, which is simple to operate and maintain, as well as a 20 year income stream in the form of the RHI which more than covers the capital cost of the installation.

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Case Studies: South Western Housing Society, Tuckers Close

Ground source review: South Western Housing Society, Tuckers Close. An off-gas grid new build development of 12 affordable homes featuring individual Kensa Shoebox heat pumps connected to Shared Ground Loop Arrays.