Popping down to the South West to help and learn renewables from colleagues. The Welsh Pasty addicts

The gardens at Cotehele. Now thats a view!

The gardens at Cotehele. Now that’s a view!

Its been a few sunny, snowy, thundery, rainy days down in Devon and Cornwall. As part of our wider heat and hydro remit in the National Trust Paul and I spent a few days in Cornwall and Devon looking, discussing and sharing as part of the overall National Trust Renewable Energy Program. The first full day was down to Cotehele with our colleague David to have a look-see around the heating needs of the mansion. For Paul it was Biomass, heat pumps and such like but I was there for another reason which was to see the recent addition to the National Trust hydro ‘fleet’. Although its been in for a few years it was my first chance to see the 7kw crossflow turbine at the old mill site at Cotehele. Stephen who looks after the small and perfectly formed the system is justifiably proud as the system uses the water from the mill leat when the mill-wheel is not turning . The generated electricity is supplied to the Mill and anything left is exported. They have a simple mechanical leaf clearing system on the intake but like most systems under trees it needs managing and adapting as you learn (I don’t care what the salesman tells you!). From Cotehele it was then down to the very tip on the South West to see a pretty special place (Like all of them!) More on this later but it involves cast iron, under sea tunnels and stunning views!

small and perfectly formed. 7kw crossflow. But its has to be choked back to 5 Kw because of the local grid challenge.

small and perfectly formed. 7kw crossflow. But its has to be choked back to 5 Kw because of the local grid challenge.

the old mill wier with the new fish pass built by the ranger team in the background. One of the best i have seen in terms of fitting in with its setting

The old mill weir with the new fish pass built by the ranger team in the background. One of the best I have seen in terms of fitting in with its setting

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