Completed in June 2009, the Estate has built a c.30KW hydro electric plant in the village of Alport. Most of the plant has been buried underground beside the old mill, and is powered by the River Lathkill.
This plant should produce enough electricity to power up to 30 average houses, or most of the village of Alport, and save approximately 100 tons of carbon dioxide emissions per year. The Estate will benefit from revenues from sale of electric to the grid and from Renewable Obligations Certificates (ROCs)
The system works by delivering water power via an automated sluice and a pipe to a turbine which then powers a generator. The electricity is then modulated and delivered straight to the National Grid via a three phase power outlet. The machinery is specified to last for up to 75 years and requires little maintenance or management as it is mostly automated. For environmental reasons a minimum amount of water has to flow down the river, so this system automatically measures the river level and closes the sluice if minimum river flow is about to be reached.
The Estate is being advised by Derwent Hydro, a local firm specialising in small hydro generation, who have developed the business plan, designed the plant, managed all planning applications and will project manage the building process. We received a capital grant from the Carbon Trust.
The Estate Maintenance team has built all the civil engineering aspects of the project with the help of Peter Cotteral’s building team and Reynolds Sydnope plant hire.
Download the press release.