The Green Heart of Poringland


Electricity Project Completed – posted 24 May 2020

One of the most ambitious projects ever undertaken by PCFLA has been completed.

After months of planning, fund raising and contract work, the electricity and aeration project has finally been delivered.

Conceived over 18 months ago, the lakes now has its own dedicated power supply which operates the borehole pumps, aeration system and enhanced security measures.

The work involved installing a new electricity supply, meter cabinet and junction boxes as well as laying over 200 metre of cabling which in itself was demanding considering the difficult terrain.

It has proved a challenging time for project manager Paul Bonham who has successfully overcome some real obstacles along the way.  But thanks to the support of Norfolk Homes, fellow trustee Mick Waller, lead contractor PJC Electrical and a small but dedicated band of volunteers the job has now been  completed within budget.

The project was aided by grants from the Angling Trust and South Norfolk Council's Community Action Fund.

Electricity Supply Extended posted 21 November 2019

A key stage in the lakes’ ambitious electricity and aeration project has been completed.

Contractors have now laid an electricity cable along virtually the entire length of the site, so allowing the lakes to have its own dedicated supply.

“Previously power to the Noble kiosk was provided by our principal partners Norfolk Homes” explained project manager Paul Bonham.  “But now their compound is being dismantled, this arrangement can no longer continue, so Norfolk Homes have kindly carried out the work at no cost to divert the supply to our kiosk in the car park.”

Meanwhile another groundwork contractor has finished the trenching and backfill to complete the underground supply to all three lakes.  It is expected an electrician will shortly connect the services and fix socket boxes to the lakes’ fences.

Electricity Connected

Poringland Lakes’ electricity project cleared an important milestone earlier today when contractors connected the main supply between the kiosk on Potters Way and the storage container.

For a number of years, the lakes have relied on a friendly neighbour to provide a temporary electricity supply but now the lakes are self sufficient, thanks to grants from the Angling Trust and South Norfolk Council who helped to fund the project and Norfolk Homes who allowed the Association to access their supply in Potters Way and did much of the trenching work.

The final stage in the ambitious project is expected to be completed within the next few days when contractors lay the cable between the container and the lakes aprons in order to run aeration systems.

Electricity Project Gathers Pace

The lakes’ electricity and aeration project is now in full swing.

Earlier today, Norfolk Homes’ groundworks team excavated a large trench between Potters Way and the lakes’ car park in readiness for UK Power Networks to connect the cable to the kiosk early next week.

Project manager Paul Bonham was delighted with progress.

“We are really indebted to Norfolk Homes for doing all this work completely free of charge” he said. “Their involvement has saved the Association hundreds of pounds in labour and equipment costs had external contractors done the work.”

Electricity Project Well Underway 

The lakes ambitious electricity and aeration project moved a giant step forward when volunteers, aided by local contractors, dug the trench, laid the new cable between the supply point and the container and cemented the kiosk base.

Project manager Paul Bonham was delighted with progress.

“The first stage of the work has been completed without a hitch” said Paul.  “My thanks to Mick Waller Pumps and Morley Builders for all their help and expertise in ensuring the works were done on time and to a high standard.” 

The project team of Paul Bonham, Mick Morley,Danny Morley and Mick Waller take a deserved break from trenching and backfilling.

 Power Supplier Rubber-Stamps Proposals

The electricity and aeration project passed a major milestone earlier today when UK Power Networks agreed proposals to position the main cabinet and cable run between the mains supply on Norfolk Homes’ site and the lakes’ container.

Project manager Paul Bonham was delighted with the news.

“UK Power Networks engineer was very helpful.  As a result of our discussions, the green GRP kiosk will now be positioned next to the kissing gate leading to the mound” explained Paul.

“This will mean we will have to clear the brambles to the left of the gate and remove any residual rubbish.  We will also need to make some adjustment to the kiosk including installing a wooden backboard to house the electrical equipment.

“The next job will be to build the concrete plinth, dig the channel between the kiosk and container and lay the cable.  Pending further work on the Norfolk Homes site, the project should be completed by mid February” added Paul.

The work will be done under watchful eye of site manager Danny Morley and local contractor Mick Waller.

Green Light for Electricity Project

The lakes’ ambitious electricity and aeration project has been given the green light.

Following a three-way meeting between Norfolk Homes, UK Power Network and the trustees, project manager Paul Bonham confirmed that the Association has now signed an agreement with UKPN for the work to proceed.

Much of the work previously proposed to be carried out by UKPN on a fee earning basis will now be done by Norfolk Homes free of charge, so bringing the overall costs back within budget.

Under the new arrangements, the main supply will come from Potters Way as opposed to Hillside as was originally intended.  The project may be delayed until the new year when it is expected Norfolk Homes will install utilities in Potters Way.  However everything should be up and running by the spring and early summer when depleted oxygen levels in the lakes are at their highest.

It is hoped that the on-site trenching and connections to the container will be completed before Christmas.  The work will be carried out by local contractor  Mick Waller and Sons. 

Major Project Back on Course 

Fears that the most ambitious project in the lakes’ history will have to be abandoned because of rising costs have been allayed. 

The electricity and aeration project had been put in jeopardy after costs for connecting to the main supply escalated from £4,000 to £15,000. 

Following discussions with Norfolk Homes and UK Power Networks, it has been agreed in principle to connect into the main in Potters Way rather than the more costly option of servicing the supply from Hillside. 

Project manager Paul Bonham was delighted with the news. 

“We can’t thank Norfolk Homes enough for their help and co-operation.  The cost of connecting with Potters Way means that costs will be significantly reduced, so the vital electricity and aeration project is now firmly back on track” he said. 

The project team is now reworking the costs and timescale.  A further announcement is expected shortly.

Electric Shock as Costs Quadruple 

The lakes’ electricity project has suffered a major setback.  The cost of installing a dedicated supply has quadrupled. 

Explaining the shock announcement, project manager Paul Bonham said "Originally UK Power Networks quoted us £4,000 to do the work but have since revised that and now estimate the cost will be nearer £15,000 which is almost a four-fold increase.

"It appears UKPN did not include enough trenching or cabling costs in their original quote.

“Unfortunately the cost doesn’t end there.  UKPN will only provide a supply to the site boundary.  We will be responsible for all the on-site works including a new kiosk, armoured cabling between the container and the lakes and a new junction box.  

"We’ll  also need to engage an electrical engineer to complete and certify the works.  This is all on top of the £1,000 we have already spent installing the electrical infrastructure in the container” he added. 

The trustees held an emergency meeting earlier this week to discuss the shock news.  Despite rising costs, now estimated to be something in the region of £18,000, the trustees have not abandoned the project.

“We still see an electricity supply as one of our top priorities” said Paul Bonham.  “So will be exploring ways of reducing the cost and, at the same time, looking how we can raise the money."

New Aerator Making a Splash

Poringland Lakes have taken delivery of a portable aerator.  It marks the first step in an ambitious project to provide an independent electricity source and aeration system. 

“It could not come at a better time with hot weather causing oxygen levels to drop” said project team leader Paul Bonham. 

“In recent days dissolved oxygen has crashed to critical levels in all three lakes, so the new equipment is timely to say the least” he added.

The project has been jointly funded by the Association with grant support from South Norfolk Council and the Angling Trust.

 Electricity Supply Gets Green Light 

Poringland Lakes will soon have its own dedicated power supply. 

Trustees gave the go ahead to the ambitious project to further enhance and improve the lakes facilities. 

For some time, emergency power has been provided by a friendly neighbour but now the lakes will have its own metered supply. 

The programme will involve UK Power Networks installing a 79 metre mains cable, at a cost of £4,000, from a junction in Hillside to a point next to the welcome sign at the lakes entrance.  The PCFLA will provide a kiosk at this point to accommodate the supply, dig a 450mm deep trench to the storage container and supply a meter cabinet. 

The total project is expected to cost in the region of £6,000. 

“While we have been very appreciative of the temporary supply and support of our neighbours, it is important we now have our own dedicated supply” explained head bailiff Noble, who joins Paul Bonham and Mick Waller as part of a three-man project team overseeing the operation. 

“Not only will it make our security systems even more robust but it will allow us to do much more on-site work including running the pumps and charging equipment.  Eventually it would enable us to fit aeration equipment, CCTV and the like – as well as making the occasional cuppa” smiled Ray. 

“Local contractor Mick Waller Pumps has already offered to help out by supplying equipment and doing some of the groundworks, so that should help to keep the costs down” explained Ray. 

The implementation programme, including dates, will be announced shortly.