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This page last updated: -9 Mar 12

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Tutbury Ecopower update

Some may be wondering whatever happened to that wonderful idea of a Hydro Electric Scheme at the Weir on the River Dove.


Well, it’s still going strong and a final design for the scheme has been produced!

You may be wondering why it has taken so long. The Chairman’s answer would be, “Have you ever tried building one!” Really though, it is because a partnering arrangement with a professional Hydro Company didn’t workout. We seemed to be making very little progress over quite a long period. The good news is that the scheme has progressed further in less than a quarter of the time by ‘going it alone’ as a voluntary community group!


So what have TEP been up to?

We have registered as an Industrial Provident Society (IPS). This is like a Coop crossed with a Building Society and means that we can be a legal entity and raise funds. Money has already been raised to commission the final design of the hydroelectric scheme and to seek Environmental Agency approval. In terms of current projects, we are engaging with contractors to build it, seeking advice and quotes on connecting to the national grid, looking at loan and investment opportunities, building financial models, negotiating with stakeholder agencies and much, much more than anyone could have ever believed – including ourselves!


Why have we been so quiet these last months?

It is important to make sure the scheme is completely viable before announcing a successful outcome. Being as TEP is going it alone, we can’t say at this stage when or if it will all actually happen, although targets are being met and confidence levels are high. In reality, it is very complicated and there are still a number of potential show stoppers to overcome. Now however, we know what they are and have the necessary skills, contacts, support, networks and audacity to overcome them. TEP believes that if it can be done, then it will be done!


Other TEP news

Late last year we entered the National Energy Share competition. If we had won, we could have installed £75,000 worth of Solar Panels on public buildings in and around Tutbury to provide free electricity and raise funds for the community. We finished 3rd behind Edinburgh and Newcastle – a fantastic result considering the size of the other projects involved.

TEP will conduct Thermal Profiles of homes and provide thermal images of heat loss so that savings can be made. We can offer sensible energy saving advice and even loan out energy monitors. Rockwarm Ltd have conducted a number of surveys in Tutbury for free cavity wall and loft insulation, and this offer is likely to run through the summer, so be quick to call them on 0800 132689.

Marches Energy Agency will soon be delivering free presentations on awareness and energy saving advice at Tutbury Institute - watch out for the adverts.

£1,500 worth of funding has been secured to create an Environmental Teaching Pack for the newly formed Schools Cooperative, which includes Richard Wakefield School.

Contact info@tutburyecopower.co.uk if you would like to be involved in any of the above initiatives or would like a Thermal Profile of your home, Energy Advice or a Loan an Energy Monitor.



Information for Editors

Background

Tutbury Eco Power is a community group based on the Staffordshire – South Derbyshire border. With a mini-hydro scheme on the River Dove as its flagship project, its aim is to reduce the collective carbon footprint of the village for the benefit of the community.

Main Contact: Steve Rhodes (Chairman):

Email: steve@tutburyecopower.co.uk

Website: www.tutburyecopower.co.uk

Download PDF version of this press release