Greenburn Hydro Project

A view down the Greenburn valley looking south east

Industrial heritage

From Stone Age axe factory to Victorian gunpowder works, the Langdale valleys have a rich industrial heritage, energised by water power as far back as the 15th century. The Greenburn valley is no exception. As a former copper mine, many features associated with its legacy are still in evidence and of much interest today. The remains of water sluices, leat systems and a waterwheel pit remain visible and the site is now a designated Scheduled Ancient Monument (SAM). 

Green future

This summer we are starting work on a significant hydropower project nestled in the heart of this valley. When complete it will provide a robust renewable energy solution in a landscape where few other opportunities exist to bring in a guaranteed income 'stream' to support our future conservation work in Little Langdale.

Watch this space

Keep checking back below for regular updates from the project team on how the work is progressing and more about the unique history of this valley. We're looking forward to sharing this exciting project with you as each stage unfolds.

Latest posts

08 Nov 17

A brief interlude

With the intake now complete it’s time for the project to take a short break. The next action in our planned programme of work was to lay the penstock pipe to transport water from the intake down to the powerhouse. However with the incessant wet weather we were concerned by the potential for this work to mobilise large amounts of sediment into Greenburn beck to the detriment of Little Langdale Tarn, a Site of Specific Scientific Interest. As a result, our contractors have decided to pause their work until February when we anticipate the ground will be much firmer and the sediment therefore less susceptible to mobilisation. We’ll be back soon…

Beautiful view across the valley

18 Oct 17

Screening process

The coanda screen has been installed on the intake structure and the river diversion has now ended with the river back to its original water course. The screen is an engineered wire mesh which prevents debris from entering the intake, going down the pipe and blocking the turbine, restricting its output. The screen is designed to be fully self-cleaning so any debris such as leaves and plant matter will simply wash off in high water conditions. We have now concluded our intake works and the area will be grass seeded in the spring when the grass growing season recommences.

A new coanda screen has been installed at the Greenburn hydro project in the Lake District

09 Oct 17

Making good progress

The intake structure is nearing completion and the stone cladding is now being fixed to the concrete structure. All the stone is locally sourced from the neighbouring valleys and was transported to site by helicopter. Once the cladding is finished we will place a coanda screen onto the front of the intake to complete the installation. More on coanda screens in our next update! The very wet weather of late has made the work site challenging at times but we are still on track. The beck diversion will soon be removed and the stream will return to flowing along its natural course.

Concrete intake with stone cladding