This paper records the results of a pioneering exploration borehole drilled in 1984 to a depth of 403.84 m in the London Basin and underlying London–Brabant basement high. The key objectives of the project were to measure the equilibrium temperature in the Paleozoic basement, estimate the temperature gradient after climate impact corrections and assess the heat flow in the area. From this, estimates of temperature at depths of 2000 m could be made with a view to evaluating potential geothermal resources. From the downhole measurements, a temperature gradient of 16°C km−1 was estimated with a temperature range between 46°C and 51°C at a depth of 2000 m, considered to be consistent with other UK sites where there is no contribution from high heat production granites. The results of the Thamesmead exploration borehole suggested that the geothermal potential of the Devonian and the Paleozoic basement below London is poor, and no further work was carried out.

The work has remained unpublished until now but in view of the current renewed interest in geothermal resources it is appropriate to make the work public. Although the results were not encouraging, they do remain as a contribution to the revitalized assessment of geothermal resources in the London area and the UK in general.

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