Perhaps, of all developments in the area, the construction of Dove Stone Reservoir between 1960 and 1966 has had the most impact. Fortunately, the Dovestone area was within the Peak District National Park so stringent planning controls were in already in place. The beautiful valley was admired and treasured by thousands of people who were concerned that the reservoir would spoil the area. walkers, picnickers, ramblers, climbers, campers and various associations such as the Scouting movement, rose up to object to the scheme. It was by careful negotiation and the promise that a clause would be introduced in the Bill to ensure the preservation of various amenities that the objections were overcome.
Another big objection came from the nearby mill of Robert Fletcher & Son, manufacturers of 95% of the cigarette paper in this country. The mill already depended on the particular quality of the water for its manufacturing process, which was drawn from Greenfield Brook and Chew Reservoir. Indeed, in times of drought, the company extracted all the water from these sources.
A detailed description of the scheme can be read in the Booklet of Dove Stone Reservoir Construction on this website.
Capacity 1075 million gallons ( 4887 million litres) Maximum depth 103 feet ( 31 metres)
When the water level was low during one hot summer and before a guard was placed around the rim, I observed a group of foolhardy youths sunbathing on the overflow ‘steps’, some of them were several steps down.