Many of you may have noticed the cranes unloading strange looking equipment at the back of the Strutt Arms in September. This is a new hydro-electric turbine being installed by Derwent Hydro, replacing the old one dating from the 1930’s.
Derwent Hydro owns 12 hydroelectric power (HEP) sites round the country, including the one at Milford and ones in Belper, Burton and Borrowash (see website for details) and is headquartered in Milford, with offices under the Just Ice café off Foundry Lane. As part of Derwent Hydro’s ongoing maintenance and upgrade programme the Milford HEP plant is being renovated.
The new turbine arrived from the Czech Republic in September and teams of engineers have come from over there to help in the installation, which is still ongoing. The photos show the old turbine plant, the old turbine after its gearbox has been removed, and the view into the turbine pit during installation.
The new turbine will have the same generating capacity, 150kV, as the old one, but will be more efficient. The old turbine was fixed, but this one moves up and down with the level of the river and so is more likely to produce power for more of the time.
The upgrade has given a unique opportunity for Milford residents to see photos of the inside of the facility, many of whom were not aware of its existence. Many thanks to Jamie Needle, managing director of Derwent Hydro, for the information for this article and for the pictures.