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Coalisland man becomes first connection to village gas network

A Coalisland man recently made the switch to natural gas to heat his home this winter, making him the first resident in the County Tyrone village to connect to the SGN Natural Gas network.

Seamus Rafferty first to be connected to gas network in Coalisland.
Seamus Rafferty first to be connected to gas network in Coalisland.

Seamus Rafferty also became the 1000th domestic connection to the network in 2021, having finalised the installation of his new boiler just before Christmas.

For SGN Natural Gas, reaching such a significant milestone reflects a growing desire among the public in Northern Ireland to heat their homes using a fuel source that is easily installed,

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maintained, and offers customers like Seamus the convenience of staying warm this winter while exerting the minimum amount of effort.

Seamus is no stranger to the gas business, as he works with the infrastructure contractor Kier and has been involved in the industry for 25 years.

“At long last I’ve got natural gas in my own house,” he laughs. Seamus previously used LPG (bottled gas) to heat his home, but thanks to the team at SGN Natural Gas, running back and

forth to replace his fuel source is no longer necessary as he now has an efficient natural gas supply piped into his home.

“It’s always there, it’s at my door all the time, I’ll never run out,” he said. “And the biggest change for me is the affordability of a pay as-you-go meter. I can budget

better for my gas heating and hot water.”

One of the major benefits of natural gas is the provision of instant hot water, meaning time spent waiting for water to heat up is now a thing of the past for customers like Seamus.

Seamus had his natural gas installation completed just three weeks before Christmas and was delighted to know that the instant access to heating and hot water is there for him

whenever he needs it. “I’m more than happy with it, knowing it’s there for me 24/7,” he said.

Benefits

With decades of experience working with gas pipeline infrastructure, Seamus has seen first-hand the benefits of installing natural gas in homes across the network area. He said getting

natural gas fitted in his own home has always been on the back of his mind and having worked in the industry, he believes one of the biggest benefits is how economical it is.

Another bonus for Seamus was the natural gas installation process at his home. It was completed quickly and as seamlessly as possible.

“The guys were so efficient doing the work and I would say they were in and out in about half a day, with everything set up and ready to use,” he said.

Seamus chose to heat his home with natural gas rather than another fuel source because he knew it would free up space in his garden.

“There’s no big oil tank or burner outside, giving me more room out the back. Now, it’s only a matter of getting my natural gas boiler serviced once a year by a Gas Safe Registered

Engineer and that’s it.”

The network initially arrived in the village in October of last year, and Seamus says his neighbours are now beginning to enquire about switching to natural gas themselves

to heat their hot water and fuel their homes.

This year will see SGN Natural Gas reach another key milestone as it intends to trial the injection of greener fuels such as biomethane into its network infrastructure. In doing so,

carbon emissions will be further reduced in keeping with the company’s plans to further decarbonise its network and play its role in tackling climate change.

The good news for customers like Seamus in Coalisland, as well as others across towns and villages in the west, is that their decision to switch to natural gas will not only give them a

reliable and comforting means to heat their homes in the short-term, but it will also benefit the planet for years to come as decarbonisation efforts ramp up.

SGN Natural Gas hosts regular information sessions across the network area in local venuesthroughout the west of Northern Ireland, offering potential customers the opportunity to

speak to someone in person about making the switch to natural gas.