London smog anniversary brings back memories to the UK's first combined heat and power network

December 2012 marks the 60 years anniversary of the Great Smog of London 1952 and the theme of sustainability is just as relevant today as it was then. That’s why CityWest Home’s Pimlico District Heating Undertaking (PDHU), built over 50 years ago to help combat London’s air pollution, continues to be a crucial source of clean, affordable energy in the city.

The PDHU opened its doors in September to the public during Open House London 2012. Visitors from across the city were able to see inside the PDHU’s energy centre. They were also able to climb the 41 metre thermal store (a tower which stores 2,500 tonnes of water) to see some breathtaking views of Westminster. Located in Pimlico, London, the PDHU is the UK’s first combined heat and power network and provides heating and hot water services to 3,256 homes, 50 commercial premises and three schools in the area.

It is an invaluable source of energy at a time when cutting the carbon footprint is high on the agenda. The PDHU originally used waste heat from Battersea Power Station to supply housing that, needing no coal fires, could be built without adding to London’s smog. This was a landmark initiative following the Great Smog of 1952, which caused the death of an estimated 4,000 people. The event demonstrated that cleaner, affordable energy was needed to help reduce the capital’s air pollution.

Mark Hoyland, Chief Executive of CityWest Homes, said: “PDHU is an historic gem in the capital. It is a valuable source of clean, sustainable energy and services thousands of homes and businesses in the area.

The 60 year anniversary of the London smog is a reminder of just how important the PDHU is in helping to reduce pollution in London. It also provides affordable energy to our residents during times when rising fuel prices are an important issue for many people.”

CityWest Homes can arrange a visit if you are a specialist group such as a school, university or interest group. Please contact Chris Richardson, energy strategy manager, CityWest Homes, on 020 7245 2076 or crichardson@cwh.org.uk for further information.


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