Bath Abbey and Roman Baths

Bath Abbey from the Roman Baths. PICTURE: David Adams

England's world-renowned Bath Abbey is set to have eco-friendly underfloor heating installed in an innovative solution using water from the nearby World Heritage-listed Roman Baths.

The works, being undertaken as part of a £19.3 million project to restore the abbey's floor, will see engineers using technology to tap into the hot water from the baths as its transported via what's known as the Great Roman Drain from the baths to the nearby River Avon and transform it into renewable energy which will then be used to heat the abbey.

A quarter of a million gallons of hot water flow through the Roman Baths from a thermal spring located at the heart of the site.

Alex Gilmer, who is overseeing the larger 'Footprint project' which as well as repairing the abbey's floor will see the provision of new spaces for learning, music and interpretation and better visitor facilities, said the building's Victorian-era heating system was "sadly outdated, inefficient and expensive to maintain".

"This combined with the work we’re doing as part of our Footprint project to repair the abbey’s collapsing floor makes this the ideal time for us to install a new underfloor heating system and is a truly exciting way of using Bath’s most famous resource to create sustainable energy.”