Britons Rip Out Traditional Stoves to Save Money As Energy Costs Surge
- British people are removing their beloved Aga stoves to combat surging energy costs.
- One worker told Bloomberg he’s removed 35 of the vintage-style appliances this year.
- Some owners have been left in tears because they couldn’t afford to keep them, he added.
People in the UK are getting rid of their beloved, vintage-style stoves due to sky-high energy bills across Europe, Bloomberg reported.
Agas are cast-iron stoves that mainly run on gas and have become enduringly popular in the UK. They include up to five ovens and two hobs.
A brand-new appliance can cost up to £25,000, or $29,000, to purchase, according to the Aga website. Bloomberg reported that second-hand Agas can sell for around £5,000.
The stoves are designed to be left on all the time, although some of the newer versions are electric and can be switched on and off, per the Aga website.
Some owners have found their Aga has become too expensive to run amid the energy crisis, per the report. Aga said on its website that users can expect to pay around £40 a week to run one of its higher-end stoves.
Jack O’Dwyer, a worker tasked with removing stoves from kitchens, told Bloomberg he’s thrown out 35 Agas since the beginning of 2022. Some of the owners cried during the removal process, he added.
O’Dwyer said at least 100 people have phoned him to ask about throwing out their Aga. Some of the owners can’t afford the £500, or approximately $584, removal fee, and asked O’Dwyer not to charge them, he told Bloomberg.
One client paid £10 a day to keep an electric version of the Aga running, but got rid of it six months later, O’Dwyer told the publication, adding that forking out £70 a week for a stove was “outrageous.”
Energy prices have soared since Russia invaded Ukraine in February. The Kremlin has cut its flows of natural gas to Europe through the Nord Stream 1 pipeline in response to Western sanctions. It’s forced governments and some businesses to limit how much power they consume.
Aga engineer Glenn Bing told Bloomberg he had removed the traditional stoves at a rate of one a week this year. He also said in the report that he was converting oil and gas Agas to electric at the same rate.
Bing believed the cost of living was to blame. He told Bloomberg that most removals were due to people moving into new homes where the stove was already present — but they feared it would cost too much to run.
An Aga spokesperson didn’t respond to Insider’s and Bloomberg’s request for comment made outside of normal working hours.