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Secretary of State opens pioneering heating system at Kingston Heights

Ed Davey, the Secretary of State for Energy and Climate Change, officially opened a new open loop Thames Water heat pump installation this week. The cutting-edge system will provide heating and hot water to the Kingston Heights development where Pellings are acting as Employer's Agent.

The development comprises 137 flats, of which Pellings are responsible for 56 shared ownership flats for Affinity Sutton, together with a 142 bedroom hotel. Developers Redrow are also creating 250 flats on an adjacent 13 storey development alongside the Kingston Heights development.

The system draws water from the Thames at around 5°C, is boosted to 9°C via heat plate exchangers and is distributed around the site at 9°C. Compressed refrigerant (which boils at 0°C) then takes the latent heat to individual flats to provide underfloor heating and hot water provision. The system will provide over 2 MW of heat output, and the system is the first of its kind in the UK.

The installation is expected to reduce utility bills by around 20%, and save 500 tonnes of CO2 per year. This far exceeds the Local Authority requirement for on-site renewables. Once completed, any excess heat from the Hotel will also be redistributed back into the system to maximise the benefit for building users and residents.

Ed Davey was delighted to see an innovative system that will see the development make efficient use of natural resources to minimise its carbon footprint. He said:

"Kington Heights is a great example of how sustainable solutions can help power entire communities. I want to see a community energy revolution where projects like this are the norm, not the exception. This project will not only transform the waterfront area in Kingston, but also means residents' bills will be lower than if they used gas.

The Thames is a great natural asset to Kingston and London as a whole. By capturing the heat permanently stored in the river to provide heat and hot water to the whole development the project shows the enormous potential of renewable energy".

The flats for Affinity Sutton are due for completion in January 2014. For more information about the project contact Ian Collins on

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