Esholt WwTW - Pioneer of Sustainability
Esholt was built in 1924 and now serves a population of around 600,000 people. Over recent years, we've invested heavily onsite and have further plans.
Our aim is for the Esholt site to be completely self sufficient when it comes to energy. We've already installed two combined heat and power generators which cost £1m each. These can create around one third of the energy required to power the plant each day by turning methane into heat and power.
We've also built the first hydro screw electricity generator ever to feature in a UK sewage works. This consists of two 12 metre-long Archimedes screws which harness the energy created by the waste water as it flows into the plant, fuelling 10% of the sites' daily energy consumption.
However we don't want to stop there, and we've got some exciting schemes in place to create even more energy onsite.
Early next year, we hope to start a £30m project which will see us make improvements to the way we treat sludge. By adding a fourth digester and improving the way we treat sludge, the site will become much more environmentally friendly and help enable us to become self sufficient energy wise. If you have a barrier pass for The Avenue, you may notice additional construction traffic whilst we carry out this work and we would urge drivers to take additional care.
As part of our £30 million investment it will include the construction of new buildings and apparatus, near to the existing treatment area with some additional facilities within the green waste area. The new facility will allow for increased bio gas production for renewable energy generation through the provision of two new high efficiency Combined Heat and Power units.
This work will last 18 months and while this work is carried out, there will be additional traffic, which will access the site via Harrogate Road, and there may be additional noise whilst we construct the new buildings.
As part of our aspirations to achieve zero waste on site, we'll start work to remove old material from within some of the existing filter beds located near to the Avenue, Esholt.
This work will allow us to reduce carbon emissions and the miles needed to import material, reduce our capital costs and reuse an existing material within the boundaries of our site. We'll try to limit the impact by working outside peak hours; however, please take extra care when driving or walking through the site as there will be an increase in plant movement within key areas.
These works are being undertaken as part of our Bio-Energy scheme that will allow us to get closer to our target of Esholt being self sufficient when it comes to energy. If you would like more information on the scheme please look out for the next edition of our Water Matters newsletter, or subscribe to this web page.
Map of new construction
Esholt Visitor Centre
Learning about the environment, waste water and what happens when the loo is flushed has become much more fun thanks to our new Environmental Visitor Centre, which was officially opened by Minister of Environment Hilary Benn on 18th September 2009.
In a first for the region, the centre provides school children and community groups the chance to take an educational journey around the Esholt site to find out how the company treats the equivalent of 112 Olympic swimming pools of waste water every day and returns it safely back to the environment.
The centre boasts hands-on science experiments for children enabling them to learn about how floods occur, what bugs are used to recycle waste water and how the treatment process works.
To book a visit at any of our educational centres -
Watch our video on how we propose to make Esholt fully self sufficient when it comes to energy.
The Avenue, Esholt
We've made some changes which will affect existing barrier pass holders for our Esholt site.
We've recently had to increase the price of passes to allow us to carry out essential improvements to The Avenue. This increase came into effect from October 2011 and means that an annual pass now costs £90 a year. We appreciate that this is a relatively significant rise and would like to assure pass holders that we haven't taken the decision lightly.
From this month, we'll also be supplying 50 new passes. Customers who are on our waiting list will be given priority. New passes will cost £150 per annum.
We hope that you agree that the pass is still good value for money and we hope customers will continue to benefit from using The Avenue in the future.
If you have any queries about barrier passes please contact Sandra Pearson by emailing her at