Cllr Slattery, Cllr Lolavar with Lisa Castilo, Ernest Dence TRA holding a board with the words - warmer, healthier homes
Lisa Castilo, Ernest Dence TRA alongside Cllr Slattery and Cllr Lolavar.

Published: Monday, 11th March 2024

As part of our mission to tackle the climate crisis and in line with our commitment to be carbon neutral by 2030, a plaque marks the installation of a water-source heat pump on Ernest Dence Estate.

The communal water-source heat pump on the estate works by extracting heat from groundwater. The heat pump then uses electricity to efficiently transfer this heat to the hot water used for heating and hot water in radiators, sinks and baths. 

This method of heating the 95 homes and the community centre on the estate is a more efficient way to provide heating and hot water. The homes now use less energy and emit fewer carbon emissions into the atmosphere.  

Cllr Slattery, Gary Beacon from Re-Gen, Lisa Castilo, TRA and Cllr Lolavar.

Cllr Pat Slattery, Gary Beacon (Re-Gen), Lisa Castilo ( Ernest Dence TRA) and Cllr Mariam Lolavar.

Councillor Pat Slattery, Cabinet Member for Housing, Neighbourhoods and Homelessness, said: “We want to work towards making our council homes more energy efficient and to reduce the amount of carbon they emit into the atmosphere (which contributes to climate change). 

"We are using new ways of doing this through a series of upgrades and improvements to many more homes. We’ve already started to modify some of our older council homes in the south of the borough and we’re also starting an extensive programme to improve council homes through our capital repairs programme to ensure that residents have safe and secure homes that meet modern living standards.”

Councillor Mariam Lolavar, Cabinet Member for Inclusive Economy, Business and Skills, said: “We are continually looking at how we can use the latest technologies to bring about improvements for our residents.

"Our work at Ernest Dence Estate, working alongside our innovation company DG Cities, is one example and came about because of our involvement in Sharing Cities, a major EU funded Smart City programme with the Mayor of London and the Cities of Milan and Lisbon, among others. 

"We are now using the knowledge gained at Ernest Dence in other developments to roll out further low carbon solutions across the borough, reinforcing our status as a progressive and innovative Council.”   

Ernest Dence plaqueSince the installation of the water-source heat pump at Ernest Dence, the Council has installed air source heat pumps in three other council housing blocks.  In recent years, heat pumps have become a standard feature in new-build housing developments, as they provide a more efficient and low-carbon way of serving homes with heating and hot water.  However, many older council blocks and estates throughout London are still served by gas communal boiler systems – like the former one on the Ernest Dence Estate.

The installation of the Ernest Dence heat pump was part-funded by the European Union through a programme known as Sharing Cities. Other funding came from the Royal Borough of Greenwich and the Local Energy Accelerator programme, which is funded by the Mayor of London.