Fairstead Community School, Kings Lynn

Project: Fairstead Community School, Kings Lynn

Fairstead Community School in Kings Lynn, Norfolk had been operating their heating and hot water systems through a mix of mains gas and oil. With the equipment coming to the end of its expected life, Norfolk County Council saw this as an opportunity to look for a more energy efficient solution that would satisfy the school’s heating demand as well as bring down its carbon footprint.

Stephen Stanforth, Building Services Engineer at NPS Property Consultants, commented “The school’s heating was running on an oil-fired boiler and the hot water on a direct gas-fired water heater. There was not a sufficient gas supply nearby to fulfil both the heating and hot water requirements and the school was keen to move to a greener fuel source than oil. We needed to review all the available options to see what would be the best solution for the school, both financially and environmentally.”

NPS Property Consultants worked with Hamworthy Heating and their agent, Mike Crouch, to design a tailored renewable solution for the community school with over 320 pupils. The chosen scheme combined solar thermal and a biomass boiler to offer an ecologically efficient heating and hot water system. The school was able to part fund the project through the Carbon Emission Reduction Fund from Norfolk County Council.

Eyre Building Services installed the equipment which included a Hamworthy Herz Firematic 199kW biomass boiler operating on wood pellets to provide the heating for the school. The space previously used for the oil storage was utilised for the flexible hopper wood pellet store with blown delivery to the biomass boiler. A Kamstrup heat meter was fitted to measure the heat generated and used in order to submit a Renewable Heat Incentive (RHI) claim.

A Hamworthy Trigon solar thermal system was installed alongside to satisfy the hot water needs of the school. Six flat plate solar collectors fitted to the roof on A-frames feed two Powerstock PS500 calorifiers. An RHI-compliant solar heat meter was positioned to correctly measure the water flow through the system to calculate the eligible heat that is generated and used.

A Hamworthy Stratton 100kW wall hung boiler completed the installation to provide peak load duty assist or standby for the biomass boiler.

Stephen added, “I have a great working relationship with Mike and have used Hamworthy products in many projects before so I know they are reliable. The installation was successful and as well as benefitting from lower fuel bills, Norfolk County Council are currently working on the application to receive the Renewable Heat Incentive payment.”

With current RHI tariffs the school hope to profit from payments of 8.4p per kWth of heat generated from the biomass boiler and 10p per kWth of eligible heat generated from the solar collectors.

Stephen concluded, “The caretaker of the school, Darren, has been ‘hands on’ throughout the project to understand how the specialist equipment works. This enabled a smooth handover to the school and Darren is able to clean and monitor the equipment to ensure it is operating as effectively as possible all of the time.”