Shocked

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Digger
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#3056 Shocked

Post by Digger » Thu Aug 01, 2019 6:01 pm

Hi everyone, I was shocked to read that there is a possibility of the dam bursting and flooding Whaley Bridge.

I hope the water recedes and that the reservoir is drained so no one is flooded out.

I wish you all the best and I hope everyone is alright.

Regards
Digger.



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Norm
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#3057 Re: Shocked

Post by Norm » Thu Aug 01, 2019 6:40 pm

Yes, doesn't look good but precautions have to be taken.

Had an email late this afternoon from a chap at the Daily Mail asking if he can use photos from the website of the reservoir, said yes because they are old etc. Not sure what he wants them for, maybe to pad out stories etc.

Roads further down the valley, near the Goyt, in New Mills and Strines are now closed, they are taking a collapse seriously.



chulme
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#3058 Re: Shocked

Post by chulme » Fri Aug 02, 2019 8:19 am

A couple of questions if I may: (1) I recall being told many years ago that the dam did burst and flood the village many years ago, pre-1900 perhaps. Does anyone know more? (2) In 'my day' the resident of the house by the dam was an employee who looked after it after it and the canal basin, is this still the case?

Charlie



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Gnatalee
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#3060 Re: Shocked

Post by Gnatalee » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:32 am

Am glad this subject has been raised - I have been following this constantly from Wednesday, when the pictures and videos started appearing on FB.

My thoughts and best wishes are with everyone in Whaley, Furness Vale, Bugsworth, New Mills etc - sincerely hope all comes to an end satisfactorily and that they are back in their homes soon. I have a cousin who, I know, will have been evacuated as she lives at the foot of the dam.

A big "hats-off" to all those working hard to save Whaley and keep-up the great community spirit.

Gnats
xx



R. Stephenson-Smythe
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#3061 Re: Shocked

Post by R. Stephenson-Smythe » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:39 am

Good morning Digger and Charlie,

I listened with interest to the news this morning:
One clown on the BBC said that “The very town that the reservoir was built to protect was now under threat from that same reservoir”
Nobody picked her up on this point surprisingly and so that now seems to be a fact.
WE all know the Reservoir was not built to protect the town but was part of the canal scheme and was solely there to top up the canal as was the dam at Combs. That is why the volume of water was always calculated in Locks.
It was empty for many years in the 70’s whilst Z & W Wade did some repair work.

In fact in the 70’s we used to walk across the dam wall and it is nowhere deep as you might imagine.

But here is a bit of information you might find interesting:
Public Records Office.


RAIL 856/7 Peak Forest Canal Committee Minutes.

14/15 September 1834 Mr Brown present.


RESERVOIR AT WHALEY.

Met Boothman respecting the Coal under Mr Jodrell’s Estate and Mr Boothman proceeded to point out where he thought Coal had been gotten and where it had not; he said the smaller Mines were gotten but the large Mine was still untouched, but that an old man of the name of ETCHES who had worked at the Pits could tell more about them. Mr Wood was sent to Etches who gave him the following Information:

WHEEL PIT: 30 Yards deep and sunk down to the 4 yards rock and a Tunnel driven to HURST CLOUGH PIT which is a little above 50 Yards deep. The loose from the Wheel Pit is into the head of the head Goit of Whaley Mill.

Pit near the Houses 60 Yards Deep and a Tunnel from Hurst Clough Pit to this last Pit when most of the Coal where gotten.

The next Pit towards Ockerly Estate 60 Yards deep.

OCKERLY ESTATE PIT or the Pit nearest Whaley 50 Yards deep on the Great Mine.

The stone that shows at the Head of the Reservoir is the 7 yards rock and 8 Yards below the 4 yards rock that the Tunnel is driven in from the Wheel Pit to the Hurst Clough Pit.


RAIL 856/6

Select Committee 3 November 1834

NEW RESERVOIR. Mr Brown reported respecting the Reservoir on Todds Brook. The first site was 33 Acres the latter 31 Acres. The Embankment for the first would contain 115,000 Cube Yards and the upper one 128,000.
The lower Reservoir would contain 4,500 Locks.
The upper Reservoir would contain 4,570 Locks.
There is a fault at the foot Bridge which Mr Brown accounts for as the reason of Coal not being having gotten to the South on the (blank.) He had examined the site of the Reservoir, and with respect to the Coal on the rise from his examination of the strata, he thinks there is no Coal but a small mine similar to the one lying under Cracken Edge 6 inches thick which shows itself in the Brook course.
The situation of either of the Reservoirs is such that he is of opinion that the Drainage would fill either of them 5 times in a Year, and each Lock would cost 11d. but if they could return the 5 times it would cost 6d. or 7d.
The higher Reservoir would cost £12,000 and would give 100 Locks per day for 135 days. The only objection would be that it gives a little upon Mr Brocklehurst land. He could not at this meeting fully make up his mind but he requests that Mr Meadows will inquire from Mr Coleby or any other person that can give any Information whether there have been any Coal Pits at the lower end of the Reservoir.



RAIL 856/4

Sub-committee Meeting 18 November 1834

As to the Coalmines the Committee have no information respecting the mines under the proposed site of the Reservoir and would be glad to see the Plans of the mines and works which Mr Beswick said Mr Jodrell had and which would probably throw some light on the subject.

I am Sir
Your obt Servt
James Meadows.

Thos Grimsditch,
Macclesfield.



RAIL 856/7 Peak Forest Canal sub-committee Minutes (Extract.)

5 December 1834

MEETING AT THE PROPOSED TODDS BROOK RESERVOIR.

Present: Mr Brown, Mr Boothman, & Mr Beswick.

Mr Brown examined the Strata and afterwards joined Mr Boothman and Mr Beswick. Mr Boothman had previously sent for a man of the name of ETCHES who it was thought could give some information and the following Paper was given as a result of his examination.

Edward Etches examined is 86 years old last Disley Wakes. How long since Hurst Colliery began, says he thinks it is 80 years since a man of the name of Sargeant engaged to make a Wheel Sink Pit and make into a complete Colliery at a certain Sum but he found it more expensive than he expected and left the country and was never heard of more, after which they sank the Wheel Pit to the Seven Yards Stone and when they found the Wheel would not lift the Water any further and they tunnelled out upon the side rise to the Hurst Coal Pit which is about 55 yards deep from which they had a bad road and they drove the north Level to near the Swan Public House near the old Turnpike Road where they sunk a Pit but he does not remember how deep, but has heard it said and the Pit further on the Flat was 60 Yards deep. Says he never worked in any of these Pits but has often heard Colliers say that no Coal was got South of Hurst Pit in Start Ground except in a rise Pit now filled up which may be about sixty Yards on the rise. Says the mine is four Feet thick and much more fires than there is at Furnace Clough. Says he believes there is Coal under Walkers Ground at about 20 Yards deep near Gap House Ground.




Public Record Office

Peak Forest Canal Minutes

21 February 1837. Minute 2.

Extract of Report by William Mackenzie of Leyland, Chorley 16 Feb 1837.

‘a very just representation of the position of the different stratas as they exist but taking them as a whole they are not favourable for making a secure and retentive Reservoir to hold water, there being no foundation on the north side to connect and unite the Puddle to, but a very porous rock full of joints and cracks (backs) that could not be made secure without forming an apron lining from the vertical Puddle Wall in the Embankment, spread over a great portion of the inside of the Reservoir’.


NB: The FOOTBRIDGE referred to in the Report of Thomas Brown is shown on the enclosed extract from the Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway Company TWO CHAIN Survey of the Peak Forrest Canal and Feeders of 1889 by:

H. Fowler,
Surveyor and Lithographer,
8 King Street,
Manchester.

The footbridge in question is directly over the fault mentioned by Thomas Brown.
Manchester, Sheffield and Lincolnshire Railway
Canals Department,
Marple.

22 July 1895

Dear Sir

OLD COAL SHAFT AT TODDS BROOK RESERVOIR.

In reply to your instructions, respecting the above. The following information I have received from a Mr William Southern, Snr., No 4, Roach Cottages, Whaley Bridge. This man informs me that he has worked in this coal Pit and is acquainted with the old shaft that exists in the Todds Brook Reservoir. He states that the said shaft has not been sunk the full depth, but is stopped some few yards before reaching the coal. He says there has been a heading driven, from the Coal, outside the Reservoir, to the Bottom of the old Shaft that is in the Reservoir. He states that the said Shaft has been tipped full of Puddle from the Bottom and is protected on the Top with large stone flags. Some 10 or 15 years ago, our company complained of water escaping from the Reservoir down this shaft. Southern was one of the men employed to test this complaint. He states there was a large quantity of water lying in the pit where the Coal had been worked. This water he assisted to pump out with hand pumps; they succeeded in getting it dry and found the Heading leading to the old Shaft, examined the same and found that there was no escape of water but that it was practically dry. He states that perfect reliance can be placed on the above statement.



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#3062 Re: Shocked

Post by gritch » Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:54 am

Gnatalee wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 9:32 am
Am glad this subject has been raised - I have been following this constantly from Wednesday, when the pictures and videos started appearing on FB.

My thoughts and best wishes are with everyone in Whaley, Furness Vale, Bugsworth, New Mills etc - sincerely hope all comes to an end satisfactorily and that they are back in their homes soon. I have a cousin who, I know, will have been evacuated as she lives at the foot of the dam.

A big "hats-off" to all those working hard to save Whaley and keep-up the great community spirit.

Gnats
xx
I can only reiterate all what Gnats has said.
Full respect to the emergency services who are doing an amazing job and ...
....to all the people round about who are all pulling together in these difficult circumstances.
What great community spirit !!
I sincerely hope this situation ends well.


Gail

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#3063 Re: Shocked

Post by chulme » Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:56 am

Thanks R.S.S, very interesting.

Of course there's an impressive job being done by the people there. I have many happy memories of the reservoir, especially taking my late mother up there in her wheelchair.

Surely there's no need for everyone in Whaley to evacuate, though, only those below water level (including my old house in Canal Street). Edwina Currie seems to have stayed put, to report on the situation for BBC breakfast.

My memory of the 70s is that British Waterways planned to leave it empty, but were eventually persuaded - the residents of upper Reservoir Road playing a large part in the campaign - to get it repaired, which included the addition of the spillway.

Charlie



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Norm
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#3064 Re: Shocked

Post by Norm » Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:00 pm

Personally I doubt the dam will fail, but the powers that be have to be cautious and I would certainly call for an evacuation.

I have just read this quote from a woman about her mum who won't leave. MEN is Manchester Evening New by the way.

She told the MEN: "My mum won't go. She's got two dogs and a cat and doesn't want to leave them. A few of her neighbours are in the same boat.

It tickled me, now if they were in a boat it may not be too bad. I hope people can return soon and all closed roads can open. I just saw the news and the level of the reservoir is lower but a long way to go yet.



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Norm
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#3065 Re: Shocked

Post by Norm » Fri Aug 02, 2019 1:27 pm

chulme wrote:
Fri Aug 02, 2019 10:56 am
My memory of the 70s is that British Waterways planned to leave it empty, but were eventually persuaded - the residents of upper Reservoir Road playing a large part in the campaign - to get it repaired, which included the addition of the spillway.
That is interesting. I knew the spillway was new, relatively speaking.

On the BBC it was mentioned that the dam may need to be replaced, I feel because of the old construction there is now the worry factor. Now if British Waterways, who are now called Canal and River Trust, don't really need the reservoir, maybe Combs is enough, I doubt they would meet the expense. So could the outcome be that the reservoir goes? How good will the land be for future development? Do the Canal and River Trust own the land, and maybe the money would tempt them to sell? This could really be a big change for Whaley.



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#3066 Re: Shocked

Post by Digger » Fri Aug 02, 2019 2:37 pm

Looking the the picture of the spillway it looks to be a very poor construction job done down to a price.
I hope the rest of the reservoir is better made than that for the sake of those living in Whaley Bridge and the surrounding area.

Norm may have a point about it being sold of to developers. There are are a couple of reservoirs that were drained and sold off down south. They now have housing estates on them.
However, I do recall that when there was a drought a while ago the water authority was worried about the level of water in Toddbrook. Is this reservoir more important to the locality than just for feeding the canal?



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Norm
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#3067 Re: Shocked

Post by Norm » Sat Aug 03, 2019 11:39 am

Digger, years ago many canals were left to decay and I suppose in the 60s and 70s there may have been a good reason to abandon them completely. Since then a lot of work has been done to restore them, Buggy Basin is a very good example. So maybe there is a stronger reason to repair the dam now than in the 70s. All out of our control of course

I noticed this morning you can see quite a bit of dam on the water side, the draining is working albeit a bit slow, but will speed up soon.

Yesterday I was in contact with a guy from ITV, he wanted to use some photos from our site, so I obviously said yes. So the following piccy is one from last night's News at Ten. You had to be quick to read it ;)

As you will see there is no spillway, god knows what would have happened if one wasn't there last Wednesday, probably the soil would all have been washed away and there would definitely be no dam so a disaster.



Toddbrock.JPG
Toddbrock.JPG (73.49 KiB) Viewed 155 times



R. Stephenson-Smythe
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#3068 Re: Shocked

Post by R. Stephenson-Smythe » Sat Aug 03, 2019 3:23 pm

Hello Digger et al,

Many years ago, probably mid 70’s, a good friend of mine, who you will possibly know Digger, Mr. David Beeley was a buyer for Z & W Wade Limited.
Something very strange happened with both Toddbrook and Combs Canal Feeders. Wave walls were erected (similar to the ones you see at the seaside).
I asked David what they were for as no water could ever touch them due to the overflows.
He told me that British Waterways had a pile of money to get rid of before the following year’s budget was set. So somebody at Wades/British Waterways came up with the money making/spending idea.
Digger, David died a few years ago somewhere down South but he previously lived with his Mum and Dad at Park Cafe, the bakery and bread shop in Horwich End.
He was an accomplished magician and acknowledged by the late Paul Daniels to be a better man with playing cards than Paul himself.
However, I can’t remember David having a glamorous assistant such as Debbie Maghee.

R, S-S



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#3069 Re: Shocked

Post by chulme » Mon Aug 05, 2019 4:33 pm

Wave walls are designed for high winds, I suppose. The water certainly touched the wave wall last week!

Interestingly, an engineer in California who helped to save the much bigger Oroville dam (770 feet high) which suffered the much same problem, and required 180,000 people to be evacuated, has been following the Whaley Bridge story on his YouTube channel with help from Whaley locals.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rxwfmuB-t1s

Sorry to hear about David Beeley, he was a contemporary of mine at school.

Charlie



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