of the Huddersfield Water Supplies
By T. W. Woodhead
Every valley drinks,
Every dell and hollow;
Where the kind rain sinks and sinks
Green of spring will follow.
But for fattening rain
We should have no flowers,
Never a bud or a leaf again
But for soaking showers.
The supply of water to a community, as with the provision
of so many essential services, e.g., Education, Public Health,
Sewage Disposal, Gas, Electricity, and the like, are so
familiar to everyone that they are taken for granted in
the general order of things and their significance is all
too frequently overlooked. Nevertheless the history and
development of all these undertakings is so intimately associated
with the evolution of society and of industry, that the
story of the supply of so essential a commodity as water
should prove of interest to all concerned with local government
and the welfare of the people. The fact that the water supply
is generally taken for granted is a great compliment to
our Waterworks Authority. It is only occasionally, when
something goes wrong, that we get a grumble from the consumer.
As will be seen from a perusal of these pages, a knowledge
of the supply of water for a modern community covers a wide
field, and the help of experts in many departments of service
and industry are needed if an efficient service is to be
maintained. In the preparation of this Handbook, therefore,
the results of many workers, in different fields have been
drawn upon, and to all our thanks are freely given.
The memoirs of the Geological Survey dealing with this
District, by Dr. D. A. Wray, Mr. W. Edwards, and their colleagues;
the publications of Professor P.F. Kendall and Mr. H. E.
Wroot, also the Official Circular of the British Waterworks
Association have been invaluable and should be consulted
for further details and references.
For permission to consult early records and Acts of Parliament,
I wish to record my thanks to Mr. S. Proctor, Town Clerk,
and his assistant, Mr. W. Stoney; Mr. H.T. Taylor, Estate
Manager, for many early records; to Dr. Gibson and the staff
of the Health Department, for records of population and
analyses of well waters; to Alderman A. Sykes, ex-chairman
of the Waterworks Committee, Alderman A.E. Sellers, the
present Chairman, also to Alderman H.A. Bennie Gray and
Mr. A.W. Sykes for help in many ways. For details of statistics
and finance, which were so willingly supplied, I am much
indebted to Mr. W. Dransfield, of the Borough Treasurer’s
Department, and for help with many records, to Mr. H. Goulden,
Librarian and Curator.
To Mr. J.P. Beveridge, Waterworks Manager, special thanks
are due, for without his very generous help this account
could not have been written, and I am further indebted to
him for supplying details of filtration, chlorination and
the re-conditioning of mains. His assistant, Mr. J.F. Bailey
has kindly drawn the waterworks Map and prepared the illustrations
for figure 44, 48, 55 and 56.
To Professor W.H. Pearsall I am indebted for his account
of recent researches relating to Pennine waters, to Mr.
J.H. Garner of the West Riding Rivers Board; also to Mr.
W.E.L. Wattam and many others acknowledged in the text.
To Miss Ellen Gallwey I owe many thanks for the records
of rainfall and valuable help with the illustrations. The
photographs of the late Mr. W.H. Sikes have been most helpful,
also those specially taken for this work by Mr. Wright Rhodes
and Mr. F. Radcliffe, and to Mr. Noel Spencer, Art Master
of the Huddersfield Technical College, for allowing three
of his students to make sketches for figures 19, 21 and
22, to Messrs. Balmforth Ltd, for permission to use illustrations
for figures 29, 53 and 54, and to Messrs. Bray and Sons,
Ltd., for figures 16, 23 and 51.
Two previous accounts of our Waterworks Undertaking have
been written, the first in the Corporation Year Book for
1907 and repeated in the Year Books for 1908 and 1909, and
another by Mr. Owen Balmforth in the "Jubilee History
of the Corporation of Huddersfield," 1918. Both these
have proved most helpful, and free use has been made of
the fact there recorded.
This Handbook has been written at the request of the waterworks
Committee, and with their valuable assistance, and the pleasure
of preparing it has been greatly enhanced by the willingness
of all to co-operate.
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