1951 – Cathleen’s Falls Power Station, Ballyshannon, Co. Donegal
The Erne Hydro Electric Scheme utilises the natural drop of 45m between the two power stations at Cliff and Cathaleen’s Fall on the River Erne to form the basis for the third-largest hydro operation in the country.
Starting work in 1946, a 6 km-long Belleek Channel was constructed to help manage water control in the catchment area, as well as building a barrage and boat locks at Enniskillen, plus a 1.37 km long tailrace below Cathleen’s Falls. The powerstation can create enough electricity through two turbines to service over 20,000 homes. A feature of the Erne Stations is the large stepped fish passes. These enable salmon and other fish to by-pass the station and climb up-river to their natural spawning grounds.