Thursday, 26 June 2008

Strong lads - (26/06)

Another great picture courtesy of Alan Jennings - just goes to show how 'strong' the construction team are working down on the Torrs Hydro project.

Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Thats a lot of water in that river ! - (25/06)

A somewhat bizarre picture with a flying JCB and workforce with heads poking out of the water.

I know its stating the obvious but since breaking through the river wall at the bottom end of the turbine there sure is a lot of water about !

Now the debris has been cleared and the depth of the channel is correct a new 'stronger' coffer dam will have to be put in place to hold back the millions of litres of water that crash over the Torr weir each day - and thats a whole lot of water to hold back !

Next on the jobs to be done this week include starting to build the exit archway (this will look like a masterpiece when completed) and to concrete the fish pass so that the aluminium ladder can be put in pace to allow our trout and salmon to head up river towards Hayfield on the Sett or towards Whaley Bridge on the Goyt.

Carefully being moved into position the frame for the stone archway.

My thanks go to Alan Jennings for these great pictures.

Tuesday, 24 June 2008

Into the river we go - (24/06)

At this stage of the project it was time to open up the tail race out into the main river by breaking through the existing mill wall that had retained the river for the past 150 years. This in itself brings challenges as two diggers had to be lowered into the River Goyt (suitably above water to ensure environment agency guidelines are maintained) and then a process of removing years of debris and ensuring the correct depth for the exit.

Welcome to The Mersey Basin Trust - (24/06)

Last week Torrs Hydro New Mills played host to a group from The Mersey Basin Trust, after a brief tour of The New Mills Heritage Centre we came down to have a project overview with WRE whilst basking in the glorious New Mills weather - we look forward to hopefully working more closely with them in the future.

Some more Big Lift pics.... - (24/06)

Courtesy of Jeanne Daniels.

Monday, 23 June 2008

Busy, busy, busy - (23/06)

What a hectic place the site is at the moment - and not only so much happening form a construction point of view there are lots of interesting things for the public to watch as well.

Today we lowered two diggers into the River Goyt to enable the tail gate to be suitably formed (removing years of debris and creating the exit channel).

The debris is the lifted from the river in a skip using a large crane - at the same time this is happening the remaining railway sleepers are being hoisted out of the concrete run and stacked ready for sale.

Some pictures of todays happenings will follwo later this afternoon and remember keep those suggestions coming in for a name for our Archimedes screw to

Sunday, 22 June 2008

Whats in a name... - (22/06)

Well the weather on Saturday was slightly damp, but what a great turn out at the New Mills One World Festival and great to see so much interest in the Torrs Hydro stand and to meet so many of our local shareholders

The tours down to the Hydro site during the day were a great success also so a big thanks to Chris and Yvette at WRE for all their help with that.

Just a reminder that we are now officially looking for a name for our Archimidean Screw - it can be something quirky, maybe you want to name it after a friend of yours, or even your pet dog !

Send your suggestions (you can have as many suggestions as you like) to us at Torrs Hydro - the winner will be announced in July and will be suitably rewarded.

Friday, 20 June 2008

Did you know... - (20/06)

That in creating Torrs Hydro New Mills we have removed over 800 tonnes of rubble - thats around about 16,000 wheel barrow fulls - but we did get to use JCB's !

Today alone we will move (by shovel and wheel barrow and by hand) about 5 tonnes of small stones to get teh correct level and angle for the fish pass - no wonder I've got blisters !

Don't forget to come and see us at the One World festival tomorrow in High Lea Park.

Wednesday, 18 June 2008

Did you know... - (19/06)

At full power the Torrs Hydro New Mills turbine will spin at around 25 r.p.m.

Revolutions per minute (abbreviated rpm, RPM, r/min, or r·min−1) is a unit of frequency: the number of full rotations completed in one minute around a fixed axis. It is most commonly used as a measure of rotational speed or angular velocity of some mechanical component.
Standards organisations generally recommend the symbol r/min, which is more consistent with the general use of unit symbols. This is not enforced as an international standard; in French, for example, tr/mn (tours par minute) is commonly used.

The corresponding International System of Units (SI) unit would be the hertz and we have:
3600 r/min = 60 revolutions per
second = 60 Hz

In the SI one often uses the unit for angular velocity which is radians per second (rad·s−1):
1 r/min = 2π rad·min−1 = 2π/60 rad·s−1 ≈ 0.10471976 rad·s−1

To convert revolutions per minute to revolutions per second (hertz), simply divide by 60.

Now don't you feel educated !

A few introductions - (18/06)

We thought it would be useful to give a bit of background as to how we got to where we are today and in doing so introduce some of the companies/organisation's that Torrs Hydro New Mills have worked with - it certainly wasn't a case of finding a fast flowing river with a weir and sticking a turbine in a big hole - if only !

Firstly we have
Mann Power Consulting Ltd

Mann Power Consulting Ltd brought the Archimedean Screw turbine into the UK for the first time, and has been at the forefront of supplying this equipment for hydro-generation projects since 2004.

They are a small team committed to providing a friendly, efficient service from feasibility study right through to final commissioning and anywhere in between.

For the Torrs Hydro New Mills project, they carried out the initial feasibility study and system design, (which was subsequently developed by Western Renewable Energy - more about WRE later in the week) and supplied the Archimedean Screw.

Friday, 13 June 2008

One World Festival - (13/06)

Just over a week to go until the New Mills One World Festival - a great fun day in the centre of New Mills, great 'entertainment' as always.

This year, the Festival's focus is 'Reduce, Re-use, Recycle', which, of course, you've all been doing, but now is the chance to take it a step further - so come along to the One World Festival and find out how!

Torrs Hydro will be there of course so feel free to come and say hello or perhaps take advantage of the site tours we will be arranging for the day which will allow you to see at first hand the amazing work that has taken place over recent weeks and ask the questions you've always wanted answering.

So put it in your diaries now - Saturday 21 June - High Lea Park, New Mills.

Thursday, 12 June 2008

22 degrees exactly - (13/06)

Well what a busy afternoon and evening its been - hopefully a few of you had opportunity to see the screw being winched down the ramp made of wooden railway sleepers and continue its short trip down the concrete slope to now rest at an angle off 22 degrees and where it will live for at least teh next forty years.

The pictures above and below show the start of its journey which started at around 5:30pm this evening and finished just before 8:00pm - that's about 10fph (feet per hour).

Great physical efforts by the team again today with safety being paramount with so much heavy lifting equipment, weight of the screw, pressure points at various areas of the frame - nothing whatsoever can be taken for granted and nothing was.

With the team having worked 11 days without a rest - many of those days running into 10+ hours and some with starts as early as 5:00am - tomorrow will be seen as a well earned rest day.

Monday will see many more tasks starting but surely not as demanding as the last five days.

More pictures from Sunday - (12/06)

Some more great pictures from Sundays Big Lift courtesy of Alan Jennings

Stop press - (12/06)

The turbine is just starting to be slowly winched down into position as I write this (18:20 Thursday) - its a slow process but if your passing the Torrs you can actually watch it descending into position - it should take at least another 60-90 minutes.

Pictures to follow later.

Wednesday, 11 June 2008

The 'A' frame - (11/06)

There has been steady and very careful progress of the turbine across the site and into situ at the top of two piles of railway sleepers.

The winches have been secured to the concrete base and a carefully calculated 'A' frame has now been constructed to take the weight of the turbine whilst the castors are removed from the frame and later the front sleeper pile will be carefully dismantled to allow the screw to be manoeuvred down the ramp.

The pictures below give various views of the turbine resting at the top of the concrete run.

Tuesday, 10 June 2008

A view from above - (11/06)

A great picture from yesterday of the screw making its slow journey through the Torrs riverside park to the construction site - with the assistance of two JCB's

Picture courtesy of Richard Elliot

The Big Lift in video - (10/06)

Some video footage of the big day itself - if anyone has any pictures they feel are worth sharing with everyone who reads the blog (and thats quite a large number of people now) then please free to email them on to me at

Monday, 9 June 2008

Slowly does it - (9/6)

Those that have passed through the Torrs today will have seen the 12 tonne Archimedes screw being slowly manoeuvred from its overnight resting place into the site compound.

A combination of muscle power, steel rails, JCB's and some ingenious engineering which started at 5:00am this morning have made this happen - the balmy New Mills weather has made working conditions on the site today somewhat hostile, hopefully tomorrow will be a little cooler.

A big personal thanks from all the Directors of Torrs Hydro New Mills to all those involved with yesterdays Big Lift exercise and in particular Chris, Yvette and their team from Western Renewable Energy.

An equally big thanks to the people of New Mills and shareholders for your patience - 8:30am came and went and soon turned into 11:30am as our driver took a somewhat slow scenic route to New Mills - but it was well worth waiting for !

Nuts and bolts - (09/06)

After yesterdays excitement its still all hands to the pump (well screw actually) as the team in the Torrs continue with the project - any key dates/events that are worth watching or have happened will be posted on here.

Below is some video footage from two weeks ago showing the shuttering being dismantled, the shuttering was used to form the walls before concrete was poured in - as ever our thanks to Ken for the pictures and his err... choice of music !

Sunday, 8 June 2008

'Eureka' we've found it ! - (08/06)

Gently does it as 12 tonnes slowly descends into the Torrs

What a great day - perfect weather, a great turn out by New Mills for the 8:30am start and no screw in sight !

Eventually after finally locating our driver - who had taken a very scenic route to New Mills we started the long awaited lift of the Archimedes screw down towards its new home in the Torrs.

With excellent work by Ainscoughs cranes and Western Renewable Energy a perfect landing was guaranteed - we even made the tea time Granada news !

The crowds gather (again) to watch in anticipation

Tilly wonders 'why so many Bob the Builders ?'

Saturday, 7 June 2008

The Big Lift - (07/06)

Well its taken almost 18 months to get to where we are today.

A long journey which will over the next few weeks give our town of New Mills a unique place in renewable energy history.

But for now lets concentrate on an important milestone within the project - the lowering of the Archimedes screw from the Union Road bridge down into the Torrs.

The weather is set to be nice and sunny so grab your camera and go watch a piece of history in the making - remember 8:30am Sunday 8 June.

Friday, 6 June 2008

Two - (06/06)

Just two days and counting - Well the screw arrived safely from Germany on Wednesday and is being stored and will be transported by road to Union Road to arrive in good time to be lifted down into the Torrs on Sunday morning.

The big task today was to carry on working on building the piles of railway sleepers and the creation of the ramp which some time next week will allow the screw to be moved to its final resting place.

Normally this would be done via a large crane, but due to weight restrictions on the bridge into the Torrs we have had to resort to more 'traditional' methods of moving 11 tonnes of steel - it will be slowly wheeled on its giant go-kart towards the concrete pit as I like to call it - this is about 10 feet deep but has been made level at the top end with ground level to allow the screw to be wheeled into position where it will then be held by an A frame whilst one pile of sleepers is removed then allowed it to be slowly manoevred by heavy duty winches that have been bolted to the concrete floor.
Below we can see some of teh 150 plus railway sleepers that have been used - each one has had to be craned into place and then takes two men (or women Yvette) manoevre into the final position.

Heavy duty winches that will be used to manoevre the crew

The ramps start to take shape