Thursday, 11 July 2013

Two aqueducts, a coal canal and a water powered pumping station and you can't see any of them.

The main problem with aqueducts is that you cannot view them from the canal.

Looking back across the Avoncliffe Aqueduct. I know that the best view is from below but we hadn't planned for an expedition into the valley bottom so this is as good a view as any, from the canal.
We also crossed the Dundas,

at least there is a chance to see above the parapet from this one.

At the west end the Somerset Coal Canal joins the main line. Unfortunately it is now only a stub used as moorings. But there are dreams of restoration, now there's a challenge. It was originally built to tap into the coal traffic from the Somerset coal field at Paulton. 18 miles and twenty three locks. There was a branch to Radstock but water supply problems led to this being converted to a tramway in 1815. Beaten by railway competition the canal closed in 1898 and was finally abandoned in 1904.
We moored at Claverton.

The waterwheel of the pumping station is currently being rebuilt so it is not open to visitors for the rest of the year.

Across the field the cattle were lazing by the Avon while a short way upstream the weir,

which feeds the pumping station, was proving a great attraction in the heat of a summers day.
The field also provided a splendid spot for several groups of picnickers and when the herd of cattle wandered over,

they were ignored with true British phlegm.

"Where there is honey there are bees."

Watch this space.....................

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