The site uses thermal energy from mineworkings. Credit: C&W

Lanchester on the move, Geo50 up for grabs

Having departed Gateshead to consolidate operations in Durham, the wine merchant has instructed Cushman & Wakefield to find an occupier for the 180,000 sq ft warehouse, which has its own on-site renewable heat source.

C&W is the sole agent for the property and is seeking a suitable taker with a requirement for process heat and/or hot water as part of its manufacturing operations.

The building, named Geo50, is a steel portal-framed, six bay industrial unit with offices. It is heated through an underground geothermal heat pump system enhanced by warm water sourced from disused coal mine workings underground, the UK’s largest such system.

The future occupier at Geo50 will have access to net zero heated water and will benefit from subsidy payments from OfGem, which could be as high as £1m per year, until September 2038.

Geo50 sits above several generations of mine workings from 80-300m down. Many layers of coal were extracted with the workings spreading miles in all directions. The workings are flooded with resting water sitting below ground level.

Dave Robinson, partner in Cushman & Wakefield’s logistics & industrial team, said: “This is an incredibly rare opportunity and we’re excited to bring such an unusual warehouse to the market. It will appeal to a variety of manufacturers requiring heat as a main source of energy, and businesses committed to minimising their reliance on fossil fuels and reducing their carbon footprint.”

Lanchester Group chief executive and founder Tony Cleary said: “Thermal energy from groundwater in abandoned mines is an untapped area for UK businesses and it presents a real opportunity for firms to make a significant contribution to the decarbonisation of heat and net-zero carbon emissions.

“We truly believe in its potential and look forward to starting discussions with companies interested in the site who share our vision. This gives the new owner opportunity to go from zero to hero as far as their sustainability programme is concerned, tapping into leading edge geothermal technology.”

Geo50 is located just off the A184. Neighbouring businesses include Dutch paint giant AkzoNobel and premium hamper supplier, Spicers of Hythe.

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