UK’s first Hydrogen Village may be coming to Ellesmere Port

A Hydrogen Village, the UK’s first, may be built in Whitby, Ellesmere Port in 2025 to demonstrate how the country could use eco-friendly energy.

Up to 2,000 homes in the area could get free boiler upgrades to convert them from natural gas to low-carbon hydrogen for their heating and cooking.

Gas distribution network, Cadent, will be leading the scheme in partnership with British and with support from Cheshire West & Chester Council.

The project has been confirmed to be on a shortlist of two locations hoping to take hydrogen to full scale, with the other village proposed for the North East.

In 2023 energy regulator, Ofgem, will confirm which programme is to go ahead.

black and white gas stove

Professor Joe Howe, Chair of the North West Hydrogen Alliance and Executive Director, Thornton Research Institute at the University of Chester, said: ‘This is another watershed moment for the North West in leading the rollout of hydrogen in the UK. Much has been made of hydrogen as a way to cut emissions from industry, but it will also play a critical role in our everyday lives as a low carbon way to heat our homes. Creating a hydrogen village is the natural next step in making the switch away from natural gas and we’re strongly backing the bid by Cadent and British Gas, supported by Cheshire West and Chester Council.

‘Ellesmere Port is the ideal strategic location for a hydrogen village – closely linked to HyNet’s planned hydrogen production and carbon capture infrastructure. If picked, it will be a triumph to see the first 2000 homes in the North West using low carbon hydrogen.

‘Government has recognised the role of hydrogen in both reaching net zero and increasing our energy security, it’s practical projects like the hydrogen village that will demonstrate that positive change is happening. The North West’s leaders, businesses and academic institutions are all working together to make hydrogen a reality, capitalising on our industries, skills and natural assets. The region is the clear choice for such an innovative energy project.’

Currently, most homes and businesses rely on natural gas for power, which accounts for 23% of UK carbon emissions.

It’s hoped the project could save 2.5 tonnes of C02 per annum in the average UK home, while the upscaling of the hydrogen economy could create 75,000 jobs according to the Hydrogen Taskforce’s 2020 Economic Impact Assessment.

Photo by Kwon Junho 


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