Clywedog Reservoir

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Clywedog Reservoir
Badgernet Clywedog reservoir 3.JPG
Clywedog Reservoir
Location Llanidloes, Powys
Trefeglwys, Powys
Coordinates 52°29′10″N 3°37′30″W / 52.48611°N 3.62500°W / 52.48611; -3.62500Coordinates: 52°29′10″N 3°37′30″W / 52.48611°N 3.62500°W / 52.48611; -3.62500
Type reservoir
Primary inflows Afon Clywedog
Primary outflows Afon Clywedog
Basin countries Wales
Max. length 9.5 km
Surface area 2.5 km²
Max. depth 66 m
Water volume 50,000 Megalitres

The Clywedog reservoir (Welsh: Llyn Clywedog) is a reservoir near Llanidloes, Wales. Completed in 1967, the reservoir was built near the B4518 road, Powys, to supply water to Birmingham and the English Midlands[1] by river regulation and to mitigate flooding in the lower Severn by storing excess winter rainfall. The reservoir was formed by damming the Afon Clywedog, a tributary of the River Severn. Its concrete buttress dam is the tallest concrete dam in the UK, with a height of 72 metres and a length of 230 metres.

Below Clywedog reservoir dam

When at capacity the reservoir contains approximately 50,000 megalitres of water. A second, much smaller embankment dam is located at Bwlch-y-gle to prevent overflow into the next valley.

Construction of the dam commenced in 1963 after the passing of an Act of Parliament ordering its creation to help prevent flooding of the River Severn in winter and to maintain its water levels in the summer. Local opposition was strong against the construction of the reservoir as it would result in the flooding of much of the Clywedog valley and the drowning of 615 acres (2.5 km2) of agricultural land. On top of several disruptions and protests, during construction in 1966 a bomb was detonated within the construction site, setting work back by almost 2 months. The political extremist group Mudiad Amddiffyn Cymru (MAC) was widely suspected of carrying out the bombing.

The reservoir was opened in 1967 and till this day has been in continuous usage, generally filling with water over the winter months and gradually releasing it during the summer months. The reservoir is currently owned and operated by Severn Trent Water Limited with oversight and regulation by Natural Resources Wales. Clywedog Sailing Club operates on the lake, and Powys County Councils Staylittle Outdoor Centre delivers a range of adventure education both on the water and in the surrounding area.

The dam operating plant runs self-sufficiently from a 500 kW hydro-electric turbine. The area around Clywedog dam is now a popular leisure destination offering scenic walks and wildlife watching.

In a TV ad for the Land Rover Defender, a Defender 90 is seen winching up the face of the dam under its own power.[2]

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