Bruce Allen’s Insight | January 2023

Welcome to my insight to the January 2023 HETAS monthly newsletter.

Welcome to the first HETAS newsletter of 2023. I hope you had a restful Christmas break and have had a busy start to the new year. We ended 2022 with some positive industry trends, we saw an increase in sales of stoves and installation numbers followed this trend too. Throughout the year we saw growth, particularly following the launch of the new HETAS website and the growth was exponential since August when the energy crisis led to people seeking alternative fuel sources to heat their home. Pageviews across the HETAS site were up over 50% when compared to the previous year. Installer searches were up nearly 150% across the year and chimney sweep searches increased nearly 100%. This positive trend has continued into 2023. We continue to work hard to provide value to all our registered businesses through both online and offline marketing supported through our PR activities. 

We are gearing up for the first government publication of the year as Defra look to publish their emissions of air pollutants. The report contains statistics on annual emissions for the period 1970 to 2020. Data comes from the National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory (NAEI) which is compiled using internationally agreed methods and a wide range of survey and administrative data sources including sources from government departments, agencies and commercial organisations. We will share with you details of the report as they become available. Following on from this is the publication of Defra’s air quality statistics report followed by the National Atmospheric Emissions Inventory (NAEI) which is published in early summer. We eagerly await developments from the Welsh and Scottish governments on their clean air plans. Our team continues engaging with government organisations and representatives across the UK to gain an understanding of their strategies relating to domestic burning. We all have a role to play in promoting responsible burning, from choosing the right appliance, installation, use (including fuel choice), servicing and maintenance. 

As well as encouraging responsible burning, HETAS is keen to see that relevant legislation is appropriately enforced. We know that during an energy crisis, people will turn to whatever means to keep warm. This should not be at the impact of the environment, air quality or people’s health. This month we saw a Gloucestershire resident fined for failure to comply with an abatement notice issued last year under section 80 (1) of the Environmental Protection Act 1980. The homeowner pleaded guilty to failing to comply with an abatement notice after burning treated wood at his home, sending a “pungent and acrid” smell into the air from out of his chimney. 

Early on in January we launched our Book a Sweep campaign. We have done this as we know that on average around 40% of chimney fires in England take place between January and March. We have launched an online campaign, further supported by direct mail shots to encourage stove users to have their chimneys swept and appliances serviced, along with messaging on fuel selection. Already during January, we have seen an over 300% increase in pageviews on the HETAS chimney sweep search when compared to January 2022. Our partnership work also extends to Local Authorities and Fire and Rescue Services. You can get involved in the campaign over the coming months, we have a range of assets available on the website and through our social media channels, including a short video on our YouTube channel. 

As we head into 2023, we continue to work on development of the website, following a revamp to the front facing part of the site last year. We are already underway with a revamp of the Technical Hub, working on major improvements to the notification process. With installers now fully utilising the online system, we want to ensure that the process is straightforward and easy to use. Our aim is to launch the redeveloped system in the summer and in advance of the next heating season. 

This month we had some small changes to our team. We said a sad goodbye to Jo, our Registration Manager, after 10 years with the business. Jo is off to work for a lovely locally based charity. We wish Jo every success and happiness. Carla Waring now takes up the role of HETAS Schemes Manager, I’m certain you will all welcome Carla as she steps into her new role. Carla will be supported by another of our valued team members, Pauline Panter. 

The HETAS team is available to discuss any of the topics raised in this newsletter, please do not hesitate to get in touch if you have any questions or wish to discuss anything at all. Visit our contact page, give us a call or drop the team a message on social media. 

Login to the HETAS Technical Hub to access a range of resources including, Technical Bulletins and to notify your installations, also read the latest news on the HETAS website.


HETAS, Severn House, Unit 5 Newtown Trading Estate, Green Lane, Tewkesbury, GL20 8HD