Fireplace removal

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Hi all

I'm in the process of removing a very old outset gas fireplace. All external bricks removed and now left with this (in picture).

The new gas inset fireplace doesn't fit when this surround is in place. But I'm not 100% sure if this is supporting anything or what is behind it. It appears to be in two pieces, the top half makes up the throat.

Can this be removed?
 

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It's a fireback which can be removed. There will probably be some rubble behind it.
 
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Thanks. Is it a necessary part of the new gas inset fire installation, or will I need to replace it with a new one?
 
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Can the fireback for the inset fireplace also be the one screwed onto the back of the fireplace itself, or does it need to be a separate one similar to the one we've just removed?
 
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OP, sounds like you are attempting to install a gas appliance without experience of or qualifications for gas work.
much more information would be necessary to safely advise you regarding some parts of the installation - for instance, you dont even provide the proposed appliance name and ref. number.
for the sake of a few quid why not get a GAS SAFE in at this early stage of the job?
 
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The gas fire itself will be connected by a professional - we've already had him in to seal off the gas line. I'm just doing the building works before the actual installation of the gas fore goes in, but as this is the first time renovated the fireplace it's quite new to me.

Also given the heating inefficiencies of gas fires I'm looking into other options such as electric fires especially as it transpires that I may need to remove the fireback. If I decide on electric, I'll get someone in to do chimney sweep and seal it off
 

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