Introducing your Highly Commended Renewable Heat Installer for London!

While we may not have topped the chart at the London region Energy Efficiency Awards, coming highly Commended (2nd) in the Renewable Heat Installer & Contractor of the Year category is nothing to be sniffed at!

Huge congratulations to our hard working team – keep up the good work!

For more information on our open-loop ground source heat pump installations, visit

Imminent changes to EA discharge regulations could leave you in the stink.

The Environment Agency (EA) introduced new rules regarding the discharge of treated sewage by systems installed and in use on or after 1 January 2015. If you have a septic tank you need to identify whether it discharges to a river or stream (surface water discharge) or whether it discharges to a drainage field, as after 1st January 2020 discharges to surface water from both old and new septic tanks will no longer be permitted by the EA.

If you have a septic tank that discharges directly to surface water you will need to replace or upgrade your treatment system by 1 January 2020.

Where properties (domestic or commercial) with septic tanks that discharge directly to surface water are sold before 1 January 2020, responsibility for the replacement or upgrade of the existing treatment system should be addressed between the buyer and seller as a condition of sale.

It is not uncommon for a septic tank or soakaway to be located on neighbouring land. In these instances, the responsibility to upgrade still lies with the owner of the septic tank whether the soakaway is on their land or not, so it is important to act quickly. The process could be slowed and deadline potentially missed if issues occur during the upgrading process.

If your system requires replacing or upgrading due to its discharge location, you have three possible options:

  • connect to mains sewer
  • install a drainage field so the septic tank can discharge to ground instead
  • replace your septic tank with a small sewage treatment plant

Only small sewage treatment plants can be permitted to discharge to a surface water such as a river or stream.  A small sewage treatment plant (also known as a package treatment plant) treats the liquid so it’s clean enough to go into a river or stream.

It is possible to apply for a permit for discharge to surface water from a septic tank, however these are only granted in exceptional circumstances. It is advisable to contact the EA before applying.

Discharging to ground:

Discharge from septic tanks and sewage treatment system can be made to ground via drainage fields.

Discharge to a soakaway borehole can only be made from a sewage treatment system and must be permitted by the EA. Permits must be applied for in the following circumstances:

if you discharge:

  • to a well, borehole or other deep structure
  • more than 2 cubic meters (2,000 liters) per day

If any part of the building your system serves is within 30 metres of a public sewer, the EA will not allow you to start a new discharge. If there is a good reason why you cannot connect to the sewer (e.g. a river or a hill in the way) then you must apply for a permit from the EA.

More information can be found on the Environment Agency website, or by contacting the EA on:

03708 506 506 or at

H.D. Services Ltd can help!

Treatment plants

Operating for over 35 years, our bespoke HD-SM plant is designed to meet the needs of the individual clients and comply with strict legislation. We provide support and advice in dealing with the EA and can help in securing any necessary permits and/or licences required. We are also approved installers of the Klargester Bioficient range and offer maintenance services to ensure continued compliance with any permits.


Our soakaway boreholes are constructed using the cable-tool percussion method – preferred by the Environment Agency (EA) when drilling the chalk aquifer, and are designed specifically to meet the requirements of the treatment system they are to serve. Our underpinning ethic is that we want to protect the aquifers from which we make our living.

We also construct drainage fields to manage the discharge from septic tanks.

Our portfolio includes the National Trust, RSPB, various county and borough councils, Highways Agency as well as hundreds of domestic clients and estates.

HD soakaway borehole construction design in chalk

For more information on our bespoke systems and services we offer, please either contact us directly by telephone on 01494 792000, by email at or visit our website at

Renovating or building your own home? The NSBRC has a host information and courses that will help you achieve your dream.

5th July 2019 sees the centre host the Guide to Renovation Projects master class.

Delivered by David Hilton who is an authority in sustainable building and energy efficiency, with extensive knowledge in building fabrics and heating systems and has completed extensive renovations to his own family home. For more information and to book tickets, click here.

6th July / 21st September / 7th December 2019 :- Ask an Architect.

The Royal Institute of British Architects (RIBA) is offering attendees a free personal consultation with an architect to discuss ideas for designing and building your own home, or renovating or reconfiguring your existing home, in a strictly no obligation 25 minute meeting. For more information and to book, click here.

20-22nd July 2019 is the Self Build Course.

Covering 11 topics in total the informal workshops make use of the superb practical exhibits available in the Centre to provide attendees with a level of knowledge which guarantees their projects will go more smoothly. For more information and to book, click here.

We made the list – again!

We are proud to announce that we have been shortlisted in the RHI Installer of the Year category for the East of England region at the Energy Efficiency Awards!

The winners will be announced at the awards event held in Gatwick on the 28th June 2019. Fingers crossed!

We made the list!

We are proud to announce that we have been shortlisted in the RHI Installer of the Year category for the Greater London region at the Energy Efficiency Awards!

The winners will be announced at the awards event held in London on the 20th June 2019. Fingers crossed!

The Green Revolution – is it wind powered?

Unveiling a new deal with the industry, the government has said that 1/3 of British electricity could be generated by wind farms by 2030.

Currently around 7% of British power is produce by harnessing the power of the wind, but the government hopes to increase this to more than 30% and provide more than 25,000 jobs int he sector by 2030.

The full article by ITV can be found here:

The FIT is no more – is the decision to remove the incentive the right one?

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Under the scheme, homeowners with solar panels were paid for any excess power fed into the grid.

The scheme had made an important contribution to renewable energy but currently added £14 a year to the average household energy bill. The article from the Energy Voice presents views from both sides.

2018 – new record high for clean electricity

As the use of coal continues to decline, the use of renewable energy supplies is on the rise, supplying well over a quarter of the UK’s electricity last year.

The government has pledged to bring coal off the system by 2025 and with continuous decline in its use to produce electricity there has been increased generation from wind, solar, bioenergy and hydropower, as shown by BEIS figures release earlier this year.

Low carbon generation, which includes nuclear power, accounted for almost half of supplies.

The statistics are outlined in full in the article below.

Cholera, water quality and public health in early Victorian cities.

Water quality and public health are something taken for granted in modern society. This interesting article highlights the difficulties of providing clean water to dense populations in early Victorian cities.

We made the list!!

We are proud to announce that we have been shortlisted in the RHI Installer of the Year category for the South East region at the Energy Efficiency Awards!

Fingers crossed that we come away with something, but this is a tough category and we have some stiff competition. Watch this space…