First Posted at Waterton’s Walton.
We begin this part of our Barnsley Canal walk at Blue Bridge, which is the last stone canal bridge before we reach Cold Hiendley Reservoir.
As we turn, we can see that like so many other parts of the canal, this stretch has silted up. As we move the short distance towards the reservoir, the remains of the canal are now on our left.
When the canal was first built, Cold Hiendley Reservoir did not exist. At that time water levels were regulated a bit further away via Wintersett Reservoir.
The canal was fed from Wintersett via a channel on what is now the north side of Cold Hiendley. The upper dam at the Wintersett Reservoir can be seen here, as viewed from the lower dam of Cold Hiendley. The channel would have ran to the left of where the water ends now.
I believe that the position where that channel entered the canal is represented by this structure here. To get to it, instead of crossing the footbridge to the reservoir you turn left. The structure is just up-ahead next to the railing. As we can see, it’s made of stone.
If this is indeed where the channel emptied into the canal then we should find evidence of a channel up ahead. Let’s go take a look. There, lo and behold we have the channel, and it runs parallel to the reservoir that’s just beyond the bushes on the far bank. Looking back down the channel towards the canal we can once again see the railing.
We now move on towards the reservoir itself.
The bridge to the reservoir crosses a point where water still flows out of the reservoir towards the location of the old canal. Let’s take a closer look. Here’s the concrete channel running from the reservoir. Water runs downwards to the canal level. The canal would have run somewhere down there.
We’re now on the bank that acted as the reservoir’s dam. This also separated it from the canal which would have been located behind the dam just beyond the line of trees and bushes on the right hand side.
Up ahead, next to the car, is a concrete circle. We’ll move perpendicular to that towards the location of the old canal. We then come to some steps. You can see some water ahead in the place where I would have expected the canal to have run. Here we find another structure from which water empties in the direction of the canal route.
We’re now looking towards where the canal would have flowed. It’s approximate position would be the point where the grass meets the brown soil of the field beyond.
We then come to another point where water once again flows from the reservoir towards the location of the canal. Again there is clear evidence of a channel. And now back to the canal side, where the canal once again becomes clearly evident.
We finish this section of canal on Cold Hiendley Common Lane. The green signpost points to where the canal route continues