The Diverse Heat Network Launch Event

Congratulations to The Diverse Heat Network on such an insightful and inspiring launch event on the evening of Wednesday 22nd February.

As a group, they aim to promote diversity and inclusivity, encouraging collaboration and enabling change across the wider industry with partners, supply chain and beyond. We’re proud to be active members of the DHN working alongside TriplePoint, Vattenfall, Fairheat, Buro Happold, EQUANS and The Department for Energy Security and Net Zero.

A huge well done, and thank you, to Vital representatives Gemma Dyson, Proposals Manager, and Trainee Energy & Commercial Modeller Millie Cooney, who have been fundamental to the success of the event. Gemma opened the event and explained how the DHN came together and their plan to move forward alongside our partners across the sector, and Millie spearheaded the events working group to plan and organise the launch event, which over 100 people attended. DHN founding member and Chairman of Vital Energi, Gary Fielding, also attended alongside Veronica Hamilton, Lead Development Manager, and Mike Cooke, Managing Director North & Scotland, to support the initiative.

The evening featured an incredible line-up of speakers who shared their experiences and best practice around how we can make a meaningful impact as a collective to retain and attract talent, with diversity at the forefront.

Guests arrived at the Institution of Engineering and Technology (IET) in London to learn more about the DHN and hear from inspirational guest speaker, Ayo Sokale, who led a session on neurodiversity. She then answered questions from the audience, with some really insightful answers around practical things we can do in the workplace to recognise individual needs and embrace diversity by playing to peoples strengths, rather than their weaknesses.

Billy Aldridge from the newly formed "Department for Energy Security and Net Zero" (formerly BEIS), then chaired a panel of experts who discussed different ways in which we can retain and attract new talent to make our sector more diverse. A highlight for Millie was the discussion around how we continue to educate and showcase the career opportunities and behind the scenes of our industry to make our sector more visible to children and young people.

Children often aspire to work in roles that they have been exposed to and seen firsthand in their everyday lives. Heat networks by their very nature are not visible - they are buried underground! This means we have our work cut out to tell a new story to the next generation. Anna Burrows from "See it, Be It" shared her experiences from sharing videos from members of the Diverse Heat Network sharing their stories of how they got involved in this sector, to generate interest, enthusiasm and awareness in schools across the UK. The storytelling in the videos enables pupils to make a connection with the industry and understand the wide range of roles available, making our sector more visible, accessible, and inviting for all.

We’re incredibly proud to have such passionate employees leading initiatives to drive change. Learn more about the DHN and their upcoming initiatives and events here.