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The North of England’s gas distributer, Northern Gas Networks, (NGN) recently said thank you to two sets of stakeholders in Penrith.

The gas transporter announced plans to safely dismantle its gas holder on Old London Road earlier this summer, in a £480,000 investment project to modernise the network.  Working with specialist partners KDC Contractors Ltd, NGN began the work in July and expects to complete it by March 2017.

The project is registered with the Considerate Constructor Scheme, and monitored on the measures put in place to be more considerate to the public, workforce, environment and the local neighbourhood.

For around 100 years gas holders were a vital part of the local gas supply system, responsible for supplying gas to thousands of people across the country. In more recent years, the gas holders have been used to bolster the network’s gas supplies during colder weather, and at peak times in the early evenings. However, advances in technology and the enhanced capability of the modern-day gas network, means gas holders are no longer in use.

The Old London Road holder was a dominant feature of the Penrith skyline and as with so many of the structures, NGN recognises that it holds important memories for the nearby community.

So as a thank you to neighbouring business Field View Electrical Ltd, and the residents of nearby retirement home Merlin Court for their support as work continues, NGN’s artist-in-residence Mick Hand created bespoke paintings of Penrith Castle and the town’s famous Black Angel statue, which were then presented to both sets of stakeholders.

Field View Electric Penrith Stakeholders

Field View Electric Ltd take delivery of their bespoke painting from the NGN team. The painting was created by NGN’s artist-in-residence Mick Hand.


Site Manager for NGN Richie Dawson explained: “The staff at Field Electrical Ltd have been so accommodating and patient during the project; letting us use a compound for access and use their water supply. We can’t thank them enough for being so supportive so just wanted to show our gratitude.

“The residents and the staff at Merlin Court have also been great neighbours as the project continues, so we wanted to show our appreciation for their patience and support by presenting a special gift.”

Merlin Court Penrith stakeholders

Merlin Court are presented with their bespoke painting of the Black Angel, created by NGN artist-in-residence Mick Hand.


NGN is encouraging people to share their memories of the gas holder at Penrith through its ‘Gas Holder Memories’ campaign by emailing gasholdermemories@northerngas.co.uk, using #gasholdermemories on Twitter or Facebook, or in writing to: Northern Gas Networks, 1st Floor, 1 Emperor Way, Doxford International Business Park, Sunderland, SR3 3XR.

NGN is aiming to demolish 23 of the region’s gas holders by 2021 as part of its continued investment in modernising the gas network.

A short film has been made a short film to commemorate NGN’s gas holders as they disappear from the region’s skyline.  The film is available to watch at: http://www.northerngasnetworks.co.uk/ngn-and-you/environment/cleaner-and-greener/case-studies/

Anyone that smells gas should call the National Gas Emergency Service immediately on 0800 111 999. This line is in operation 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.