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What to do with my fireplace

(22 Posts)
EKLInTraining Fri 06-Oct-17 17:03:48

I have an old marble fireplace surround in my living room; the fireplace itself has been blocked in. The mantlepiece needs a good clean but I think it'll turn out OK.

I was considering opening up the fireplace itself and sticking in a wood burning stove or having an open fire, but I'm in London and after doing some research have discovered that this is an environmentally unfriendly (and possibly illegal?!) route.

So... what would you do with a fireplace like this? Anyone have any creative ideas?

buckeejit Fri 06-Oct-17 17:05:48

I'd turn it into an open fire for sure - why would it be illegal?

If not possible, I would open it up and stick some logs in it just for a bit of depth & interest.

thethoughtfox Fri 06-Oct-17 17:09:20

We are putting one in ( not London) There are loads which are approved for areas where this is the case. It does cost more than you think though. We are paying £2500 for opening up the fireplace, lining the chimney and new hearth - that doesn't include the wood burning stove itself!

Bluntness100 Fri 06-Oct-17 17:12:10

Why would it be illegal?

kikibo Fri 06-Oct-17 17:12:20

Open fires are the least environmentally friendly though, as about 60% of the heat generated goes up the chimney rather than into the room.
In comparison, wood burners can reach up to 90% efficiency if I'm right.
Though obviously there is the issue of fine particles.

reetgood Fri 06-Oct-17 17:13:38

There are parts of London where you can't burn anything but smokeless fuel. And wood/ coal smoke does impact on air quality.

I'd put in a stove that will burn smokeless fuel rather than an open fire because drafts! But that's quite a pricy option. In the shorter term I'd prob put a decorative fire guard in front and dress it a bit.

Writemove Fri 06-Oct-17 17:15:15

You can get Woodburner that meet the London pollution guidelines (if that's what your mean by illegal). The company will sort out the paperwork and you get a certificate to prove its OK. We had a 1930s fire that had a small opening so got a hobbit stove. We're in London too.

EKLInTraining Fri 06-Oct-17 17:16:28

To people asking re. illegality, London is apparently a "smoke controlled area" and you're not supposed to have wood burning stoves or open fires, according to the (admittedly brief) research I've done so far. It says it's "outlawed" though I'm not sure if that means the same thing as illegal.

I got a quote for an open fire and then one for a wood burning stove, which would be my preference. I was just about ready to go ahead with it when a friend mentioned they'd had trouble getting permission to put one in, hence the research. I'd love to be wrong though!

buckeejit Yes that's the kind of thing I'm thinking of, if I can't have a fire / stove in it then I'd like to at least make it into a bit of a feature rather than covering it up with furniture etc.

steppingout Fri 06-Oct-17 17:17:05

Lovely fireplace! We have an open fire and burn smokeless fuel - not the most practical option but I do love sitting by a fire. You can also get wood burners that burn so efficiently that they produce a minimal amount (no?) smoke - these are authorised for smoke control zones and you just burn wood in them. My friends have one and it heats their whole living/dining area.

EKLInTraining Fri 06-Oct-17 17:18:34

Oh thanks Writemove that sounds like it might work out! I'd really love to have the stove but was concerned about smoke free areas when I did some research online. If they can get a certificate to say it's OK though then I'll do that.

If for some reason it falls through I like reetgood's decorative fire guard idea though, maybe with some plants or something.

EKLInTraining Fri 06-Oct-17 17:21:26

Thanks steppingout, I'm quite fond of it so would like to make it a feature. I love sitting by a fire too, sounds like smokeless fuel may be the way to go.

Bluntness100 Fri 06-Oct-17 17:23:22

I think there is some confusion, you can burn wood in authorised wood burners and you can use other fuels. On other appliances. I’m not sure what you’re friend was talking about but you don’t need permission to put one in and if you have a quote the installer will explain it to you if hetas registered. The list of woodburners is extensive and covers most makes on the market.

Bluntness100 Fri 06-Oct-17 17:23:51

ftw Fri 06-Oct-17 17:24:30

What about a pretend/electric stove? We got a fantastic one for about £800. (There are cheaper ones, but imo they look cheaper...)

Ttbb Fri 06-Oct-17 17:32:16

Open it up and put in some shelves and books. Or just fill it in with logs. I would just say fuck it and go for an open fire though

EKLInTraining Fri 06-Oct-17 17:36:40

Thanks everyone, stove it is! smile

JoJoSM2 Fri 06-Oct-17 18:13:00

Loved the fireplace. It's gorgeous!

EKLInTraining Fri 06-Oct-17 18:35:47

Thanks JoJo!

MidLifeCrisis2017 Fri 06-Oct-17 19:55:44

Something on the news recently about Saddiq seeking permission to burn wood burning stoves in an effort to reduce pollution.

AnneBiscuit Sun 08-Oct-17 16:03:44

A bio fuel fire? This is mine. It just slots in the gap.

JoJoSM2 Sun 08-Oct-17 17:29:00

Do you expect it to actually heat the house? I’m not sure what rules re stoves might be in the pipeline, but open fire and smokeless fuel is lovely for a bit of ambiance. One log burns for 2h.

Webmaster786 Tue 10-Oct-17 12:31:07

There are parts of London, where you can not burn anything but smoke-free fuel. Wood / coal smoke influences air quality.You just open it and put in some books and magazine .

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