A memorial to the beam engines…

What I am quite chuffed about is. In this arena, its seems to have taken on a different prospective and meaning. To explain more, I think that a good historical article informs, elicits questions and changes the way you think about the past….

BrownhillsBob's Brownhills Blog

P1120641 Sandfields is a beacon in Lichfield and Black Country history; for without it, supplying clean drinking water to a growing Black Country would have been a very different proposition.

Here’s something I came upon by chance I think that not just the Lichfield and South Staffordshire Water contingents will like, but all those interested in steam engines, heavy plant and Victorian engineering.

Regular readers will know I’ve been plugging Dave Moore’s campaign to save Sandfields Pumping Station, just south of Lichfield, for some time now. This remarkable Victorian edifice is not only a handsome and historically important building, but it contains a truly historic, dormant steam pump, which was employed to raise clean water from a borehole and supply it via a long main that ran beside the South Staffordshire Railway, through Brownhills and Walsall, to top up reservoirs in the Black Country.

Without Sandfields…

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About Morturn

Historian – Photographer – Filmmaker Retired construction professional with a passion for public, social and industrial history. I believe in equality, dignity and integrity for all. Don’t like people who try to belittle the ambitions of others. I am of the opinion that my now life belongs to the whole community and as long as I live, it is my privilege to do for it whatever I can. I want to be thoroughly used up when I die, for the harder I work the more I live.
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1 Response to A memorial to the beam engines…

  1. Hi David

    I’m glad you liked the article. I thought you would have something to say about it.

    We all have our own confirmation bias and blind spots. We are also influenced hugely by where we find our sources, and the spin they give our perception of history.

    This article is what? 43 years old. Pre-internet days – indeed, pre decent history archive days. The author no doubt used his contacts in SSWW and other published papers. The positive accent given by the SSWW company documentation will have been considerable. Not deliberately, but because that’s what organisations do.

    What makes it easier for us is this thing here – the internet. Before it, I would never have been able to exchange views with you like this. Operating in different places, on different subjects, we would not have made contact. But today, I can post an article from an old, obscure journal, and you can read it and form your own critique, as others have done. You may raise points with your readers, and mine. We automatically get a broader consensus because of the social net.

    I have huge respect or Gerald Reece who was the only guy I know to write comprehensively about Brownhills. He too, did so in a pre-internet time. Every time I read Gerald’s work and go to pick a point, I have to remind myself that Gerald had to traipse from archive to archive. What he did was remarkable. But not flawless. But that’s the point.

    At least these days we can all freely exchange views, and attempt to find our biases. If we listen to others, that is. I like the way you think about this stuff, and the fallibility.

    It al comes back, Mobius-loop style to my original contention:

    It’s not about the article. It’s about the discussion, and the recording thereof.


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