Gibson Mill goes green

A family fishing near Gibson Mill at Hardcastle Crags, West Yorkshire.

Gibson Mill is a 200-year-old cotton mill at the heart of Hardcastle Crags near Hebden Bridge in West Yorkshire. It has been transformed to embrace the latest green technology.

Following 18 months of redevelopment, the mill is now 100 per cent self-sufficient in energy, water and waste treatment. The only connection with the outside world is its phone lines.
The café, interpretation centre and community space are open within normal opening hours. The facilities and catering available at any one time can be adjusted depending on the power and water available.
Energy- and resource-saving features include:
  • Solar PV panels and solar thermal panels are mounted on the roof and generate enough electricity to serve the entire mill complex and to provide heat for the caretaker’s cottage.
  • Water turbines harness energy from the ‘head’ of water from the millpond to the turbine, driving the generator to make electricity.
  • Ground floor batteries store the energy being generated by the water turbines and the photovoltaic panels.
  • A log-fired boiler heats water and charges up a large calorifier (a water storage tank) to supply the café with hot water.
  • Composting toilets are water-efficient and reduce pollution by composting human waste and returning it to the soil as fertiliser.

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