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Restoring SS Freshspring

Relevance: 75%      Posted on: 21st March 2016

Built in 1946, SS Freshspring is the last of 14 Fresh-Class water carriers, all of which were 121 feet in length and were powered by a triple-expansion steam engine! She is recognised as being of national historical significance on the National Register of Historic Vessels. The SS Freshspring Society (a not-for-profit organisation) aim to return SS Freshspring to operation – preserving the past and inspiring knowledge for the future. The Steam Ship Freshspring had to replenish Naval ships with fresh water for use in their boilers. She also acted as a fire tender when required! SS Freshspring will be sympathetically…

Fritchley Railway Tunnel

Relevance: 75%      Posted on: 18th October 2015

Fritchley Railway Tunnel was recently recognised as "the earliest surviving railway tunnel in the world" – boom! It was part of Benjamin Outram’s Butterley Gangroad Railway-line, that he designed to transport limestone, from the quarry at Crich, to the limekilns above Butterley Tunnel – via the newly opened Cromford canal, in 1793. Fritchley Railway Tunnel was built for a 3ft 10 inch tramway, initially horse-led, but later (1813) by a small steam engine designed by the famous William Brunton of the Butterley Works. Alterations were made circa 1840, but she saw a lot of action. Her innards are said to…

Shirley Windmill

Relevance: 72%      Posted on: 22nd March 2016

Shirley Windmill is 1 of the last windmills to be built in this country and 1 of 4 open to the public in Greater London! Shirley is a Tower Mill and the only one in Croydon! She was built in 1854 to replace an earlier Post Mill! The post mill (which burnt down) was built in 1808 or 9, so there has been over 200 years of windmill occupation here! Research suggests that a post mill, previously at West Ham,  moved to Shirley c.1809, so may have been at this site. It ceased working in about 1890, but most of…

Birnbeck Pier

Relevance: 71%      Posted on: 31st December 2015

Birnbeck Pier is a unique structure – it’s the only British pier that links the mainland to an island. It was designed by Eugenius Birch and opened in 1867. Birnbeck Pier, known locally as the Old Pier, stands on the North Somerset coastline at Weston-super-Mare and is grade II listed and on the Buildings at Risk Register. The gothic toll house and pierhead buildings were designed by local architect Hans Price. The pier has sadly been closed to the public since 1994. Over its lifetime it has enjoyed mixed fortunes – in its heyday, it was the Victorian equivalent of…

Tarka Valley Railway

Relevance: 66%      Posted on: 21st September 2015

The Tarka Valley narrow gauge railway, Torrington, Devon, was originally opened in 1872 and over the years supported several major local industries including the Marland Brick and Clay Works. In 1925 the gauge was relaid to standard gauge and became known as the North Devon and Cornwall Junction Light Railway (ND&CJLR); but it closed in 1965.   In 2013 the Tarka Trail Valley Railway Group obtained planning permission to reinstate the railway from the Torrington Station, now known as Puffing Billy, towards Bideford up to the first iron bridge. The installation of the railway line will not affect the current…

Save Marple Wharf

Relevance: 66%      Posted on: 6th October 2017

We call on Stockport Council to save Marple Wharf by rejecting a planning application to turn our historic warehouse into a house. The community have a viable plan to turn it into community rooms and café that would preserve its heritage and public access. Why is this important? Marple was created by the canals. Generations have walked and boated along them, fed the ducks, or just stopped and stared. It makes us who we are. The centre is the Wharf, Maple Wharf, where three canals meet. Above all, this is a public place of shared heritage and experience. A developer…

Great Laxey Wheel

Relevance: 66%      Posted on: 25th August 2015

The Great Laxey Wheel (aka Lady Isabella) is the largest working waterwheel in the world! (with a diameter of 22m (72.5 feet). A brilliant example of Victorian engineering she was built in 1854 by Robert Casement to pump water from the Glen Mooar part of the Laxey mines. Today a climb to the top is rewarded with panoramic views across the Laxey Valley. It is not a conventional water wheel! Water is collected in a cistern which is above the level of the top of the wheel using the power of the inverted syphon in a closed pipe system; thus…

Longbridge Mill

Relevance: 65%      Posted on: 11th May 2016

There is evidence that a mill existed on this site 800 years ago! The earliest references to 'John the Miller' and a mill on this site date back to 1274. By 1316 there was a mention of the mill at Sherfield on Loddon being a watermill. However, Longbridge Mill (the building you see now) is more likely of 15th century origin and the granary was added in the 16th century. At the height of its success, 'Lodgridge Mill' at 'Shirefield-upon-Loddon' was a major industry in the area, with 2 water-wheels powering 4 sets of milling stones. There is still a…

Wellbrook Beetling Mill

Relevance: 63%      Posted on: 26th November 2016

Wellbrook Beetling Mill is one of the last water powered beetling mills in the UK. It is now owned by the National Trust. Wellbrook Beetling Mill was part of a large bleach works originally built in 1764 by Hugh and Sam Faulkner from Cookstown. Seven beetling machines are powered by a breastshot water wheel. The machinery is in working order and can be seen in action! The mill takes its power from the fast flowing Ballinderry River. A short distance from the road you can see the mill race and the flume - the wooden trough carried on piers of…

Cwm Ciprwth Copper Mine

Relevance: 59%      Posted on: 14th December 2015

Cwm Ciprwth Copper Mine may be remote, but its remains won’t disappoint. Mining records date Cwm Ciprwth Copr Mine to 1850,  but it didn’t last long. It seems to be out of action circa 1894. However, Copper has been won from the Snowdonia area since the Bronze Age, with evidence of the activity from 4000 years ago found in the east of Beddgelert at the Sygun Copper Mine and the Great Orme. Of course, the Bronze Age has been called the Bronze Age because the people of that time were mixing small quantities (about 12%) of Tin with the Copper…