How did they get there? And what of the beach?

One of those images you wish panned a little further to the left: The edge of the pump house (long gone) is clearly visible. Is that a bike leaning up against the sign on the dam? Image kindly supplied by Gerald Reece via David Evans.

Since it’s a slow Sunday, some unusual images of Chasewater, and a bit of a mystery.

As I’m sure you’ll recognise the images immediately above and below this text are of the south shore of Chasewater, over the road from the Nine Foot Pool, where the steps, boat ramp and wakeboard lines are today. The bridge is the earlier incarnation, before the days of the concrete one with the corrugated steel pipes that was demolished and replaced ten years ago.

So these images, which have turned up as part of the Gerald Reece collection, are of that spot on Chasewater at very low water level. We can’t say when they were taken, but in all probability, postwar. But they were certainly before the amusement park era of this part of the lake being prettified, in the late 50s.

So what’s bugging us is this: There appear to be two coal butties rotting away in the shallows. Butties are unpowered narrowboat ‘trailers’ into which loose goods or other material were loaded, and pulled by a tug, or powered narrowboat.

Since Chasewater isn’t actually on the same level as the canal it feeds, how did these boats get here, what were they doing in the reservoir and how long were they there?

I’ve never seen these images before, has anyone any clue to their origin or date?

The water level is very low here, but that’s clearly the thruppeny bit valve house in the distance. Looks like it was taken the same day. Image kindly supplied by Gerald Reece via David Evans.

One last image: Found on a Tumblr site a while back, this postcard, I’d say turn of the last century from the dress. Children and adults – I think on what we would now call ‘the beach’ at the north end of the dam, looking very un-beachlike to me.

Am I correct? Is this the north end?

If so, where did the beach originate, and where are is the ballast shown here now?

Any ideas, comment here, hunt me down on social media or mail me: BrownhillsBob at Googlemail dot com.

A turn of the century (I think) postcard image I’ve not seen before – is that the sandy beach we know today? Click for a larger version.

Thanks to Gerald and David Evans for the above two images: I’m genuinely baffled by them.

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3 Responses to How did they get there? And what of the beach?

  1. FB LYCETT says:

    tHEY APPEAR TO BE HALF BOATS, STANKED OFF AT ONE END, I RECKON PROBABLY USED FOR SOME CONSTRUCTION WORK, MAY BE TRANSPORTED BY RAIL FROM CONDUIT, MAY BE EVEN BY THE NCB, FOR USE TO COMBAT POSSIBLE SUBSIDENCE, SOMEONE WILL KNOW, GOOD IDEA TO CHECK IF THEY STILL HAVE BCN GAUGING PLATES ATTACHED, THAT WOULD TELL OF THEIR ORIGIN

  2. Reg Fullelove says:

    t he beach photo memouries of the sunday night promanard of teen age years no picture houses open no dance halls open working mens clubs was for the old uns only so teen age lads and lasses would stroll along chatting from brownhills end along to the chase end where theere was a sandy beach cant think how them bargess got into the cuckoo it must uv bin a strung oss who pulled um thear god blees thanks for the of course it was sunday nights

  3. Reg Fullelove says:

    just had a thought could it be the reck of the old steamer and its paddy boat

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