Proposed hydrogen village
An area within Whitby in Ellesmere Port could be home to the UK's first hydrogen village, under proposals put forward by gas distribution network Cadent and British Gas, with support from Cheshire West and Chester Council.
The area has been confirmed in a shortlist of two locations across the country hoping to be the first to use low carbon hydrogen on this scale. In 2023, Ofgem will confirm which location the trial programme will go ahead in. Hydrogen would be supplied to that location from 2025 for the duration of the programme - currently expected to last at least two years - and will help the UK Government decide how hydrogen could be used nationally.
Letters have been sent to all properties in Whitby, to explain if they are or are not included in the proposed hydrogen village area.
The proposal, which would see up to 2,000 properties switching from natural gas to hydrogen for heating and cooking, is part of the Government's Ten Point Plan to accelerate the path to net zero by driving the growth of low carbon hydrogen across the country.
Introducing low carbon energy for homes and industry across west Cheshire is part of the Council's Climate Emergency Response plan to help the borough to reach net zero by 2045.
Ofgem - the energy regulator for Great Britain - has appointed Cadent to run the region's Hydrogen Village programme. Cadent and British Gas will be contacting households and businesses in the area to explain what is involved.
More information, including answers to questions and a map showing the area selected, is available to view online:
You can also contact the Cadent team about the programme by:
Councillor Louise Gittins, Leader of Cheshire West and Chester Council, said:
To help cut carbon emissions and achieve carbon neutrality in west Cheshire by 2045 we are looking at a range of different solutions, including alternative energy options, as set out in our Climate Emergency Response Plan.
We're already in a unique position to have the HyNet development on our doorstep, providing an opportunity to use hydrogen as a source of energy, not only to power industry in our area but also our homes. It will also provide significant job opportunities in a new, expanding sector, for people both locally and further afield.
With the hope that the full 2025 village programme will be awarded to our region, the Council and Cadent will be working closely to create a strong community programme, with residents in Whitby, Ellesmere Port and throughout the borough. Residents will be engaged and empowered to co-produce this project throughout the process.