Vital Energi wins European Heat Pump Association award for Castle Park 

Vital Energi’s Castle Park Water Source Heat Pump (WSHP) project in Bristol has been named winner of the Heat Pump City of the Year award at the 2022 European Heat Pump Association awards held in Brussels recently. 

Vital Energi wins European Heat Pump Association award for Castle Park

The awards attracted almost 50 of Europe’s highest-profile WSHP projects and saw the Castle Park energy centre claim the top spot, shining a spotlight on Bristol’s low-carbon heat network. 

Councillor Kye Dudd, cabinet member for environment, ecology, energy and waste at Bristol City Council, said: “Castle Park Energy Centre and the Bristol Heat Network play an integral part in decarbonising the city, and I’m delighted that our work with Goram Homes and Vital Energi has been recognised. Developing the heat networks has so many benefits for the city, including the reduction in fuel poverty, cutting carbon emissions and the creation of thousands of jobs to support the local economy.  

“The installation of the 3MW water source heat pump and abstraction equipment manufactured by Star Refrigeration were only capable of being deployed with the establishment of an expert multidisciplinary team with Vital Energi as principal contractor, Sustainable Energy Ltd as lead designers and DQS as QS/project manager.  

Delivering decarbonised heat to new communities 

“This award highlights our ability to deliver the kind of bold and innovative solutions that Bristol needs to tackle the climate emergency. Bristol’s Heat Network will continue to expand through our City Leap Energy Partnership, delivering reliable, decarbonised heat to new communities, whilst creating much-needed jobs across the region.” 

Scott Lutton, Vital Energi’s operations director – North and Scotland, said: “We’d like to congratulate Bristol City Council and Goram Homes for their fantastic achievement.  This project demonstrates that WSHPs can plug into existing networks and opens up the possibility of harnessing the gigawatts of ambient heat in the UK’s rivers, which will play a large part in meeting our net zero targets.   

“Heat pumps can lower energy bills and deliver strong carbon savings and Castle Park is one of the first major WSHP projects in the UK, so we’re delighted that it has gained recognition at the European level and hope it will inspire other similar projects going forwards.” 

The Castle Park energy centre takes water from the nearby floating harbour, passes it through a heat pump and then the heat is transferred into the Bristol Heat Network, helping to lower the carbon emissions of approximately 1,000 homes and businesses.

Water source heat pumps generate the lowest carbon heat

 The European Heat Pump Association was created in 2011 to collect best practice, create role models and raise awareness of the potential of heat pumps and the awards are one of the key ways the association shine a light on the industry. 

Stephen Baker, managing director of Goram Homes, says: “I’m thrilled that Goram Homes has been recognised for this innovative development in our city. Water source heat pumps generate the lowest carbon heat around, and this is a shining example of harnessing our local resources – the floating harbour – to provide cleaner, greener heating for Bristol. I look forward to building more homes that can benefit from technology like this.”