More council homes to get central heating upgrade

Bellamy Road, Mansfield, where more than 100 homes will benefit from new central heating.
Bellamy Road, Mansfield, where more than 100 homes will benefit from new central heating.

Central heating that is modern, energy-efficient and cost-effective is to be installed in more council-owned homes in part of Mansfield.

Old communal heating, dating back to the 1970s, has finally been decommissioned at 117 properties on Bellamy Road and 40 properties on Bennington Walk, which will now be connected to an individual gas supply.

Relieved residents are warming to news of the much-needed upgrade, which will mean new boilers providing them with choice and comfort, and also save them a lot of money. According to the National Grid, an average three-bedroomed, semi-detached home could save up to £200 a year when switching from communal heating to individual gas.

Mansfield District Council, which owns the properties, approved the scrapping of the coal-fired communal district heating system, which it has been gradually replacing in tenants’ homes since 2011.

The National Grid has funded the installation of mains gas pipes to the homes, with the council spending about £2,500 on each property to convert the domestic heating and make good any repairs. Of a total of 2,200 properties earmarked for the scheme, 1,707 have now been switched to the new system.

Coun Barry Answer, the council’s portfolio holder for housing, said: “The new gas-fired central heating will provide our tenants with more control over their own heating and save them money.

“I have been told that two residents from an earlier upgrade have seen savings of about £600 a year. These are significant savings and will make a real difference.

“We have set aside a budget of £2,500 for each property, which enables us to convert each home and make any repairs needed as a result of the work taking place.

“This is part of our continuing programme of work to update the heating systems in all of our properties. The communal heating system was installed about 40 years ago and is coming to the end of its useful life, so it is essential to move over to modern, energy-efficient systems.”

Eight private homeowners who have bought their properties will not be left out when the work begins in April. The council will install the new heating to their homes which they can pay for with a loan, or the cost of the heating upgrade can be paid back to the council when the property is sold.

In addition to providing tenants with more choice over when and how much heating they wish to use and saving them money, the move to gas-fired heating will reduce CO2 emissions from the properties, making them more environmentally friendly.