A STROUD-BASED wind and hydropower specialist has celebrated an award for a project which is believed to be the first of its kind in England.

Renewables First provided a turn-key hydro package for a £516,000 project for the Dove Stone Hydro Scheme in Saddleworth, Greater Manchester.

The scheme is set to generate enough electricity to power 75 houses using reservoir water that would otherwise be wasted.

Designers say the scheme effectively prevents the emission of 164 tonnes of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere each year.

The Community Award was presented to Renewables First at an Oscars-style dinner in the Institution of Civil Engineers North West Annual Awards on Friday, February 6.

Richard Rider of Renewables First said: “Communities offer a possible revolution in how affordable, low-carbon energy can be secured in the next 15 years.

“This potential is only just being realised in the UK, where approximately 0.1 per cent of renewable energy comes from community owned-schemes.

“In Germany, this figure is roughly 40 per cent.”