Hydroelectric plan for River Great Ouse at Eaton Socon


Plug - Credit: Archant

A hydroelectric power company’s plans to install a new Archimedean screw turbine to generate renewable energy in Eaton Socon have been submitted to Huntingdonshire District Council.

A hydroelectric power company wants to install a turbine by the River Great Ouse at Eaton Socon.

Eaton Socon Hydro Limited has applied to Huntingdonshire District Council to construct a turbine at Mill House in School Lane, generating an estimated 210,000 units of electricity per year – enough to power about 64 homes.

If the plans are approved, the developers say they would reopen an existing channel which runs from the river under the Rivermill Tavern beer garden and an access road.

This would allow water to flow through the existing brick culvert before entering a reinforced concrete structure alongside the mill building, which would be predominantly below ground level. A screw turbine would be housed inside this structure, which would in turn operate a gearbox and generator within a brick powerhouse spanning the water channel.

While the turbine would be modern, it would also be large and slow moving, with similarities to the type of waterwheel that was previously used at the location, the developers stated in planning documents.

Noise would also be kept to a minimum as the equipment within the powerhouse would not be heard outside the building and the rhythmic water noises would be reduced by using a turbine system with a variable speed, the applicant says.