A rural new build development straddling England and Wales is the fourth project by Shropshire Rural Housing Associaon (SRHA) to feature ground source heat pumps, delivering on its commitment to provide aordable warmth to its 300strong housing stock.

which famously was divided through the building by the national border – resulting in a front bar in Wales and back bar in England. Comprising two, three and four bedroom family homes, each house has its own British manufactured Kensa Shoebox ground source heat pump installed in under stairs cupboards. Each heat pump is connected to a single district ground array in the centre of the development that comprises four boreholes drilled to depths of 122m. The district nature of the ground array means the scheme qualifies for 20 years of income via the Non-Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive, forecast to return £63,000 against the investment of £56,000, whilst saving residents 15-20% compared to oil or LPG alternatives. The nature of the small development, however, brought disproportionate challenges. Ian Richardson, Shropshire Rural Housing Association Chief Executive, explains: “The brownfield site was tightly confined and in a conservation area, bordered by other residential properties and a church, and immediately abutting another building project.


“To compound the difficulties, a right of access for vehicles and pedestrians needed to be maintained at all times. Working closely with our main

BUILDING CONTROLS Building controls – going from strength to strength

Jon Belfield, President of the Building Controls Industry Associaon (BCIA), highlights the current strength of the building controls industry and outlines how talented engineers can play a pivotal role in meeng legislaon and increasing energy eciency in commercial buildings.

technology, buildings are becoming smarter and more sophisticated. Currently, there is an increased spotlight on engineering, and if you have read my previous columns, you will know that the BCIA is in partnership with the government campaign – Year of Engineering 2018. We are delighted to support this initiative as we want to raise the profile and


understanding of what engineering is truly about. Innovation and emerging technologies will continue to bring challenges, as well as opportunities, and this requires the influx of budding and inquisitive engineers into our industry. Intelligent and effective building controls are a must in the current climate as they improve the comfort and wellbeing of occupants in today’s commercial buildings. What’s more, buildings must be energy efficient and sustainable over the

he building

controls industry is both complex and fascinating. Thanks to evolving

long term to ensure government targets are met. This is recognised with the introduction of the Minimum Energy Efficiency Standard (MEES), which came into force in April this year. Therefore, we need to make sure our engineers are highly skilled, confident and able to adapt to legislation.


There are many global challenges in the world today creating a necessity for change and the next generation of engineers have the potential to bring about dramatic change for the future. New and creative engineers will be at the forefront of meeting these global challenges, so it really is a wonderful time to be entering the world of engineering.

The building controls industry is going from strength to strength and this was clear to see by the fact that we received a record number of entries for this year’s BCIA Awards. Not only that, but the entries were also of exceptional quality. This underlines that our industry is in safe hands.


Furthermore, it’s important that we celebrate the achievements of those who have gone above and beyond in making our industry as successful as we are today. Surely, there is no better promotion than recognising our existing talent pool?

I believe that sharing practices within our sector is also crucial to bringing new ideas to the fore and ensuring that we not only achieve but exceed the energy efficiency targets in commercial buildings.


Like technology, the workplace does not remain static, it moves with the times. The same can be said of people’s working habits and behaviours. Our shared training challenge is therefore two-fold; firstly, increasing training opportunities for more engineers to enter our sector to meet demand and secondly, ensuring that ongoing training is available to keep engineers up to speed with advancements in technology. This will play a significant role in future- proofing commercial

buildings which will help to meet legislation and increase energy efficiency. A career as a building controls engineer is dynamic and creative – with endless opportunities to work on exciting projects which ultimately make a huge difference to peoples’ lives. The pressure is firmly on commercial buildings to be highly energy-efficient and meet global targets and our talented problem- solving engineers are able to help make this happen, My suggestion for the industry would be to continue to work together, share practices and maximise our existing talent. Let’s embrace and motivate new talent to join our sector and showcase the range of development opportunities on offer. Ultimately, this type of strategy will continue to ensure that the building controls industry will go from strength to strength for many years to come.

‘ The building

controls industry is going from strength to strength and this was clear to see by the fact that we received a record number of entries for this year’s BCIA Awards. Not only that, but the entries were also of exceponal quality. This underlines that our industry is in safe hands. VISIT OUR WEBSITE:

high specification development of new family homes in

Llanymynech is built in the car park of the former Lion Hotel,

contractor, Pickstock Homes, Kensa Heat Pumps and its drilling sub- contractor completed the work in exemplary fashion.”

Nick Scott, Managing Director of Pickstock Homes, comments: “Although the site was quite constrained, with limited space available on site, Kensa’s installation team arrived on schedule and completed the installation, working with our site manager to minimise any disruption and delay to our construction programme.” Rural Shropshire is largely off the gas grid, demanding a more considered heating approach to reduce carbon emissions and resident energy bills. In just three years Shropshire Rural Housing Association and Kensa Heat Pumps have completed three new build schemes and one retrofit scheme all featuring Kensa ground source heat pumps, equating to over 50% of all of Shropshire Rural Housing Association’s stock. David Broom, Technical Sales Manager at Kensa said: “Changes to the Non Domestic Renewable Heat Incentive tariffs have created opportunities in the social housing sector for district ground source heat pump systems.

“Shropshire Rural is one of our longest standing customers, and is an early pioneer, very quickly realising that such systems are technically robust and can be delivered at lower capital cost when compared to ‘stand alone’ single property installations, ideal for clusters of rural properties such as those in Shropshire Rural’s portfolio.

Adversing: 01622 699116 Editorial: 01354 461430 Rural renewable programme knows no boundaries

“GSHP-based systems deliver the lowest running costs to the tenant and the lowest lifetime ownership costs for the landlord; and of course, both retrofit and new build projects will benefit from the RHI income.”

Mr Richardson continues: “Shropshire Rural has worked with Kensa on both new build and retro-fit projects and has always found the company to be an excellent partner. The pumps are reliable and quiet and, whilst we plan to carry out more detailed appraisal, the early signs are that, combined with the homes’ high levels of thermal efficiency, residents are enjoying high levels of comfort and low running costs.”

uShoebox heat pumps at Llanymynech are delivering the lowest running costs to the tenant and the lowest lifeme ownership costs for the landlord.

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