November 29, 1856
The accompanying sketch present to our readers a view of one of the capacious reservoirs, and noble towers, lately erected by the Corporation, of Liverpool, in connection with its gigantic waterworks, which are now nearly complete, at Rivington, near Bolton, in Lancashire, distant from Liverpool twenty-seven miles.
These works occupy the whole of a valley, upwards of eight miles in length.
In 1710 a project was started in Liverpool by Sir Cleave More, a gentleman whose family had been for many years intimately connected with the town, to bring water into it by means of wooden troughs from Bootle, a village about three miles distant, where there were abundant and fine springs.
This undertaking, however, fell through, from want of adequate support – the inhabitants being, we suppose, content with the carts and leather buckets, by which they were supplied from the various public wells situated in different parts of the town.
There was, amongst others, the Old Fall Well, which stood in Roe Street, at the back of the present Amphitheatre; another on Copperas Hill; another on Shaw’s Brow, near where the pottery works stood, a vestige of which is still in existence at the back of the remaining houses on the left hand side going up.
There was also one called the “Dye House Well,” in Gresham Street, near the present Sailor’s Home, where, in 1758, a curious accident occurred.
A coachman in the service of a clergyman of Liverpool, going to the well to water his horses, the coach was overturned, when one of the horses was drowned in the well, and John narrowly escaped a similar fate, being extricated with difficulty.
At that time there were nearly one hundred carts employed in carrying water, the charge for which was one halfpenny per “sack” or leathern bucketful.
In 1772 another attempt was made by a Mr. Jordan to carry out the Bootle Water Works Scheme. It was issued in £10 shares, but failed after some efforts were made to establish it.
A few pipes, however, were laid down. In 1799 and 1800 the Liverpool Water Works were established in 400 shares.
This scheme was so highly thought of that the ixl closed in five minutes after the books were opened. Shares were £200 each, and an Act for the Works was obtained under 26 Geo. III. By an Act of Parliament, 29 George III., the Bootle Water Works were established.
This company brought the water from the springs as promised by Sir Cleave More and Mr. Jordan.
In 1813, the company obtained an Act to enable it to extend its operation.
In 1822, the Liverpool Water Works Company also obtained an Act which enabled them to extend their operations.
In 1848, on the 1st of March, the Liverpool Corporation purchased the interest of the two companies, paying for the Liverpool Water Works, £330,719 13s., and for the Bootle, £204,087 9s. – total £534,807 2s.
Since this period wells have been sunk by the Corporation at Green Lane, near the Old Swan, and in other localities; but as these did not adequately supply the increasing and full wants of the inhabitants, the Corporation has constructed stupendous works at Rivington as previously mentioned, and has erected three reservoirs in connection with them.
There is one in Toxteth Park, a second at Kensington, and the third at Everton, a view of which we give, and which we shall briefly describe.
The tower is 150 feet in height, 257 feet in circumference, and the arches are 38 feet. At the top of the tower is an iron tank which will contain 250,000 gallons of water, and the reservoir which is seen on the left of the tower, will hold 6,500,000 gallons.
It is built of Everton stone, taken from a neighbouring quarry, strongly cemented together and well laid with asphalt, or gas tar, in the lower courses.
The floor is bricked and cemented; the roof is upheld by iron columns.
On the outside is a grass plot, which will, when complete, form a public promenade.
These erections have been two years in progress, and are nearly completed, and will cost about £26,000.
The engine house is seen projecting from the tank tower.
The smoke and escape of steam will be carried up the elegant campanile surmounted by a flag-staff.
The water will be pumped up from the reservoir into the tank by an engine of 28 horse power, having a 3-foot-cylinder and 6-4 stroke.
From this elevation the Everton district will be supplied.
The contractors for the iron works are the Haigh Foundry Company at Wigan; the contractors for the masonry are the Messrs. Holmes of Liverpool; the Corporation engineer, Mr. Duncan, is the engineer who has designed these noble buildings; the clerk of the works is Mr. Stubbs.
(Source: Illustrated Times: November 29, 1856)