THE ARCHIMEDES screw of a long-awaited hydroelectric scheme in Oxford has started turning.

Commissioning for the Osney Lock Hydro project is underway and the 1.5 tonne Archimedes screw – installed in March last year – is up and running.

The next step is for Scottish and Southern Electric to undertake formal electrical testing before it can be passed for full electrical generation.  

The £650,000 turbine at Osney Lock, paid for by local investment, will generate 179,000kwh a year - enough energy to power 50 homes.

It is hoped the project will generate a total of £2m over 40 years for low-carbon projects in Oxford from selling energy to the national grid.