|Ladybower reservoir flooded two
man-made reservoirs of the Midlands have led to the destruction
of local communities. Inside Out investigated.
Packham took a helicopter flight over the East Midlands. One of the sights
which stood out from above were the number of reservoirs built to supply
the region with water.
But when the man made lakes were built, communities were destroyed.
Work began in the East Midlands in the late 19th century and has continued
ever since with the creation most recently of Rutland Water in the 1970's
and Carsington in Derbyshire in the eighties.
Close to the village of Melbourne in South Derbyshire lies Staunton Harold
reservoir which was created in 1964 to supply the growing city of Leicester.
still brings a tear to my eye when I think about the farm."
But the flooding
of the area changed the lives of the people who lived there forever.
Bill Bentley's family had farmed there for generations and lived in a picture
come up to me and say isn't it beautiful around here. But it's nothing
to what it was. It's all man made now."
waters of Ladybower reservoir in Derbyshire lies an area which was once
the villages of Derwent and Ashopton complete with small stone cottages,
tree lined lanes, a seventeenth century church and an old mansion.
whose family lived in the lost village of Derwent which was flooded in the
1940's still remembers his home and village life with affection and some
When the water level drops he's still able to see the remains of his village.
"People come up to me and say isn't it beautiful around here".
"But it's nothing to what it was. It's all man made now"
Cottrill whose family lived in the lost village of Derwent
Upper Valley of the Derwent is a deep valley surrounded by gritstone edges
and dominated by three great reservoirs, constructed by the Derwent Valley
Water Board primarily to provide water for Sheffield.
two dams, Howden and Derwent, were constructed between 1901 and 1916 and
they were such a large undertaking that a village called Birchinlee was
constructed in the upper valley to house the workers.
A a narrow-gauge railway was built between Howden Dam and the Midland
Railway at Bamford.
Traces of both these may still be seen. The dams were opened by King George
V in 1916.
1935 an even larger project began downstream of the two earlier dams for
the construction of Ladybower Dam, which flooded the area around the junction
of the Derwent with the Ashopton.
diver Peter Church has explored the remains of the lost villages
first put forward in the early 1920s, caused considerable controversy
because it involved the flooding of two villages; Ashopton, which lay
at the junction of the Ashop and the Derwent;
... and Derwent, which lay upstream on the Derwent river.
Despite protests the dam went ahead and was finished in 1943, though the
reservoir took a further two years to fill.
At the time this was the largest reservoir in Britain.
The flooding of the two villages was the worst damage inflicted by the
water authorities in their many projects around the Peak District, and
highlighted the damage which these civil works projects can do to local
Water lies near Oakham in the county of Rutland and is the largest man-made
lake in Western Europe.
in 1977, the reservoir covers an area of 3,100 acres, and with a storage
capacity of 124,000 million litres (27,000 million gallons), provides
not only water for domestic and industrial consumption, but also a large
expanse of water for recreational purposes.
The crest of the dam is 1,200 metres long, and the maximum depth of the
reservoir is 34 metres.
construction at Ladybower
completion of the reservoir, the floor level of Normanton church was raised,
the masonry proofed against damp, and a causeway built to provide access
to the church.
The church now houses a museum showing the history of the reservoir, including
fossils from pre-historic reptiles, and a video of its construction.
The church is floodlit by night, making it a local landmark both night
Reservoir, known as Carsington Water, was opened by the Queen in 1992.
It was formed by the damming of Scow Brook and in the winter months is
filled by pumping water up from the river Derwent, about six and a half
miles away near Whatstandwell.
During the summer months it provides water for the West Midlands.