Updated: Friday, 20th September 2019 @ 3:51pm

Hotting up: Multi-million pound plan to heat Manchester homes with geothermal spring installation

Hotting up: Multi-million pound plan to heat Manchester homes with geothermal spring installation

By Gareth Westmorland

Underground heat could be extracted to more than 6,000 Manchester homes and businesses after plans to drill boreholes in the city centre were unveiled.

The multi-million pound idea would see two rigs in the Ardwick area drill down 3km to a thermal spring.

A network of underground pipes would then transfer the heat to homes in the Ardwick and Oxford Road Corridor areas.

It is estimated the energy reservoir beneath the Cheshire Basin contains enough renewable heat to supply around seven million homes. 

GT Energy, the Irish-based developers, said residents will see a reduction in their energy costs with access to the renewable heat source.

Chief executive officer Padraig Hanly said: "Hidden beneath the streets of Manchester is a massive natural energy resource that we propose to tap into to create a leading facility that will put the supply and control of heating directly into the local community.

"It will put Manchester at the heart of a new wave of geothermal projects which will develop throughout the country in response to rising prices, the need to secure energy supplies and to tackle fuel poverty."

The plant would take 12 months to build and take up an acre during that time and half an acre after as drilling rigs are 40m high.

Energy Minister Greg Barker said it would be one of the largest geothermal projects in the country.

"This is exactly the sort of innovative green project we want to see sprouting up across the country,” Mr Barker said.

The developer is holding a public consultation on the plans on 20 July, ahead of submitting a planning application to Manchester City Council.

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