Hydropower update

We were running in February, and used the March-April dry spell to resolve the ‘drumming’. Altering the generating machinery had created this low frequency beating sound. By adding a triangle of metal sheet at the end of the launder, the same quantity of water drops but is now spread more thinly. The ‘drum beat’ is now unnoticeable.

Exceptionally dry weather followed from May to late July. The beck regained full flow only in August. Our earnings in the two years since commissioning are disappointing. We had hoped to earn ten times the amount, but this reflects our ‘teething’ troubles. If we continue generating consistently we should be more productive. The current lack of a permanent occupant at the mill cottage, the HLF-funded works and the weather each has an effect. Our estimates took account of low water and shutdown periods, but this year’s weather was exceptional, and the noise issue was beyond the scope of our forecasts. We have to hope that climate change will not drastically alter the world-renowned wet climate of the Lake District.