Clare County Library
Clare History

The Building of the Shannon Hydro-Electric Scheme

In August 1925 one of the most important under-takings for the economic and social life of the country was begun when the first sod was cut at Ardnacrusha, Co. Clare, for the construction of the Shannon Hydro-Electric Scheme. The scheme was the beginning of the electrification of the country and led to the establishment of the Electricity Supply Board (ESB). The Shannon Scheme was one of the largest civil engineering projects of its type in the world at the time it was built, and was regarded by many Irish people as ‘The Eight Wonder of the World.’

Outline of the Scheme
Preliminary Works
Weir, Intake and Head-Race Canal
Power Station
Final Stage


'Night Candles are burnt out' by Sean Keating
'Night Candles are burnt out' by Sean Keating
By kind permission of Gallery Oldham

Photographs of the hydro-electric scheme in Foto

Footage of the construction of a hydroelectric power plant on the river Shannon, Ireland [external link to Youtube]

Clare County Library wishes to thank Clare Local Studies Project for preparation of raw text for this publication.