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Monument record MDR617 - Longdendale Water Scheme, Longendale Valley, Tintwistle

Type and Period (1)

Protected Status/Designation

  • None recorded

Full Description

(SK 02689698) Bottoms Reservoir (NAT) (SK 03689776) Valehouse Reservoir (NAT) (SK 04789829) Rhodeswood Reservoir (NAT) (1) (SK 06449841) Torside Reservoir (NAT) (SK 09009960) Woodhead Reservoir (NAT) (2) The six-mile chain of reservoirs constructed by Manchester Corporation between 1848 and 1877 in the Longdendale Valley to supply water to Manchester represents a pioneering achievement in the history of hydraulic engineering. The scheme was the brainchild of J.F.Bateman who was the engineer for the whole of the construction. Between 1848 and 1865 Woodhead Reservoir was completed to dam the River Etherow. At the same time work was commenced on Torside Reservoir (1849-1869) and Rhodeswood Reservoir (1849-1852). Valehouse Reservoir (1865-1869) and Bottoms Reservoir (1869-1877) were compensation reservoirs built solely to supply water to local industries and mills in compensation for the water they had lost to Manchester. Hollingworth Reservoir (SK 00829767) and Arnfield Reservoir (SK 01329738), lying outside the main chain of reservoirs, were constructed during the same period for the same purpose. Besides being a pioneering achievement in its general conception the Longdendale scheme also involved numerous specific innovations in water technology. (3-4) Bottoms Reservoir and Dam: (SK023972) Mill owner's guaging basin and power house for hydro-electricity for the works electric railway still visible. Valve house over the bridge still visible. (5) Torside Reservoir and Dam: (SK056983) Weirs on the north side of the dam, steps lead to a bypass channel bringing water to a weir. Separate track marks the line of the Longdendale Waterworks Railway which opened in 1871 and ceased working 1968 having operated steam, electricity and diesel. (5) Woodhead Reservoir and Dam: (SK082995) Reservoir Keeper's house and valve house built of stone in the characteristic waterworks style. Dam raised in 1988 and construction caused realignment of the B6105 and the destruction of part of the trackbed of the MSLR Sheffield-Manchester line. (5)

Sources/Archives (5)

  • <1> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1954. 6".
  • <2> Map: Ordnance Survey (OS). 1980. 1:10 000.
  • <3> Bibliographic reference: Harris, H. 1971. Industrial Archaeology of the Peak District. pp. 129-30.
  • <4> Article in serial: J A Hassaw and E R Wilson. 1979. Ind Arch 14 No 2. Volume 14, No. 2. pp. 102-21.
  • <5> Bibliographic reference: Fowkes, D (ed.). 2004. Derbyshire Industrial Archaeology: A Gazetteer of Sites, Part I, Borough of High Peak (second edition). pp. 40-41.



Grid reference Centred SK 06174 98366 (8061m by 3207m)

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Record last edited

Nov 22 2017 4:53PM

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