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PostPosted: Fri Sep 21, 2012 7:32 am 
Spider Lady
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Location: Staffordshire
Burnley Express

Saturday 30 October 1880

Considerable surprise has been expressed by persons acquainted with the geology of this district, at the evidence given by Mr. Green at the recent Local Government Inquiry held in Burnley. Mr. Green stated that there was no coal within 400 yards of the surface where the reservoir would be placed. It appears that, so far from this being the case, the coal actuallt crops out (that is comes to the surface) within the area intended to be enclosed by the reservoir. The question was probably put unexpectedly to Mr. Green, and for want of sufficient time for consideration he has fallen into error. The error is, however, a serious one, and, in the interests of the Corporation, the Local Government Engineer ought to be made acquainted with it, as suggested by Mr. Councillor Greenwood at the recent Town Council meeting.


We have made inquiries of persons well acquainted with the mines in Extwistle, and are informed that there are two workable seams of coal and some smaller seams where the new reservoir is intended to be placed, and that the whole of them come to the surface within the limits of the reservoir. We understand that the outcrops are plainly visible in the brook, and can be traced by any one in the slightest degree acquainted with geology. We are also informed that an old coal pit exists there, and is actually drained into the brook within the area proposed to be included in the reservoir. This pit is shown on the Ordnance map.


A serious question arises in connection with this new reservoir. The Hecknest reservoir has had to abandoned because, owing to its being constructed over a fault, it woud not hold water. If a comparatively small reservoir will not hold water through standing on a fault, how do our Corporation and their Engineer propose to make a much larger reservoir hold water when it will be placed on the outcrop of the coal measures, with all the various strata - rock as well as coal - exposed to the water? Surely a shaft sunk below will tap the reservoirs.


A further question arises: If the reservoirs are tapped, will the coal-owners be responsible to the Corporation for tapping them, or will the Corporation be responsible to the coal-owners for filling their pits with water?


Nor are the above the only difficulties. If it be dangerous to the coal mines to have a reservoir constructed on their outcrop, will not the Corporation incur a still further liability if they increase the normal water supply of the Swinden Valley by bringing the Thursden water through the hill?


The above questions, which have been suggested to us by various persons, and are the subject of general conversation in the town, are certainly worth the consideration of the Corporation, as also a suggestion by a correspondent signing himself "Geologist," that the proper place to put the reservoir is the Thursden Valley, near Broadbank. Our correspondent adds, as one reason for doing so, that, if so placed and any accident should happen to it, the existing reservoir would not be injured. We believe, also, from enquiries we have made, that, if placed there, it would be off the coal measures.


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