TUNNEL UNDER THE HILLS

 

When the first reservoir (Yeoman Hey c1880) was being planned there was much concern from local mill owners that it would deprive them of essential water. A solution was that a tunnel should be constructed from the confluence of Birchen and Holme Cloughs to the Ashway Gap area where water would continue to flow into Greenfield Brook down a stepped weir and also be collected at a draw-off pipe for use at the mills. The picture below shows the route of the tunnel, obviously, Dove Stone reservoir didn’t exist at that time.

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The tunnel as it is when dry

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The tunnel in circa 1990. Note there is no fencing as there is today.

Birchen Clough tunnel

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About 8 feet deep with a very strong current as it enters the tunnel 

 

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The other end of the tunnel when it is in flood – the dark colour is suspended peat in the water. This huge wave effect only happens when the moors are already saturated and heavy rain continues to fall.

tunnel springZWEB-Tunnel-spring

In Feb 1990, a tragedy occurred with a youth being swept down the tunnel when it was in flood.

Full details under the 1990s tag. 

 

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