BrownhillsBob's #365daysofbiking

On a bike, riding somewhere. Every day, rain or shine.

Posts tagged ‘weir’

#365daysofbiking Going with the flow

Tuesday December 15th 2020 – For the most of the last year or so, Chasewater has been full to overflowing, or very near it. I guess with the pandemic there haven’t been the boat movements on the canal, and not as much demand for water. But it also seems the authorities prefer to keep it full these days.

For most of my youth the lake oscillated between full and very low, but since the dam work a decade ago, it’s been maintained much higher.

It’s been flowing over the weir and into the spillway, and ultimately into the Crane Brook for months now, which I’m sure is contributing to flooding near Hilton, but I can’t be certain.

It’s fascinating to watch though, and good for the wetland on the spillway.

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#365daysofbiking Risen again

December 25th – At Chasewater, I noticed how close to overtopping the weir the reservoir is again, despite the outflow valve to the spillway being open.

That’s a remarkable indication of the state of the recent weather: Naturally, more water is flowing in to the pool than is flowing out. And that’s a considerable amount.

You know what I want for Christmas? A dry spell.

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#365daysofbiking Unexpected discoveries

June 1st – I had been to the steam event at Klondyke Mill near Draycott-in-the-Clay as is usual the first weekend in June, and had left on a dull but warm late afternoon to have a pint and a rest at the Vernon Arms in Sudbury – which to my total consternation was closed, and had been for some time.

That pub – opposite Sudbury Hall and with a fantastic beer garden and architectural impression – should be a goldmine. I have no idea how it could fail.

Sad but undaunted, I headed for Rolleston on Dove via Scropton and Marston on Dove. Arriving at Rolleston, I found the beautiful Spread Eagle pub.

After a lovely drink on the benches by the river, watching ducklings potter around the and enjoying the comings and goings of this charming village, I rode south to Anslow.

On the way though, I by chance took a look to my right and noticed a high weir arrangement in woodland. For the first time ever, I’d noticed Brook Hollows Spinney, despite passing it by for 25 years or more.

I can’t find much online about it at all – it’s a high weir with a beautiful footbridge with a double arch; behind it there’s a pool and an island and all around, tucked in by the houses of the south of the village, wild garlic scented woodland.

It’s tranquil and nthoroughly gorgeous.

I must return when I have more time…

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March 25th – Lee Marston settling lakes continue to fascinate me. Created from old gravel pits in the early 80s, they are now more or less redundant as heavy industry is no longer polluting the Tame in Birmingham, and Minworth sewage works is a lot cleaner than it was; the dredging of the settled out toxic silt has now stopped and the site is becoming a haven for wildlife. 

It really is quite beautiful.

It’s still a live river, though, and where the weir carries the water downhill a notch, the plastic bottles and detritus still circle in the vortex here, a sign of our huge problem with plastic waste.

June 25th – Swans are inscrutable, they really are. On the Nine-Foot Pool at Chasewater, with the level still just about overflowing, a pair of birds sleep on the concrete spillway weir, seemingly oblivious to the natural plant detritus around them.

To me, the spot they doze in looks uncomfortable, chilly and precarious, but to them, it’s clearly just the right place to get some shut-eye.

Occasionally, I realise how much I don’t know about wildlife.

May 11th – I came back to Brownhills through Chasewater. At Anglesey Basin, I noticed that someone has fitted a guard plank to stop narrowboats – often moored here – banging into the weir edge. It’s a rough old job; the wood isn’t treated, so won’t last long, and the grouting into the sides of the basin is very rough. I suppose it’ll do the job, though. Wonder if this has been prompted by a general concern or a specific incident?

February 16th – Chasewater: the suspense is killing me. Last week, 33cm from full. Thanks to a week of snow and heavy rains, now 14cm from full. A gain of 19cm – nearly 8 inches since last Sunday evening. Considering the huge surface are of the reservoir, that’s astounding.

I noted these teenagers running along the top of the weir, trying to demonstrate their bravado to their female companions. Nothing changes. When I was their age, I’d have been doing the same thing. Bet at least one of them ended up squelching home, dejected.