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Prescot, England, L34 9HQ
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Case Studies

Helping restore community hydro facility following extensive flooding

Anna Ellam

On Boxing Day 2015, the town of Whalley in Lancashire was severely flooded, generating huge news coverage on a situation thatseverely affected the local community. The River Calder rose 2.5metres above its normal level leading to the extensive flooding, which not only affected homes, businesses and local farms but also Whalley Community Hydro. The Whalley Community Hydro is a small water hydro station which, when running, produces £550 of electricity a day.  As a local joint venture, purchased by members of the local community, it was another casualty of the flooding and cause for concern for the people who had invested in it. 

A team from Central attended site on Monday 28th December, as soon as the water had subsided enough to be able to assess the damage.  As pictures show the water had surrounded the building and risen approximately 2 meters up the wall.  Inside the building the water had risen 1.25 meters.

 Central’s team dismantled the drive and removed the control equipment that had been totally submerged by the flood waters and new equipment was ordered in from ABB in Finland.  The modules were opened up and tested, and the cleaned units before allowing them to dry out in situ over a period of 2 days.  When the team returned to install the new control equipment they checked the modules and all tested okay. The new parts took 1.5 days to install and test and Central was successful in getting the unit back up and running at 8pm on 31st December when the hydro started generating electricity again straight away.

 This was one of many drives Central has either repaired or replaced during the floods which affected the North West during December 2015 and January 2016, including the major floods in Carlisle.

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