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Thread: Coombe Conduit, April 2010

  1. #1
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    Default Coombe Conduit, April 2010


    Coombe Conduit was part of a very ingenious waterworks system built by Cardinal Wolsey to supply fresh drinking waters from the clean and pleasant springs of West Wimbledon to Hapmton Court Palace. Its owned by English Heritage now, but they only let anyone in a couple of times a year as bits of it keep collapsing. There were originally three conduits designed to supply water from springs down Kingston Hill to the Palace three miles away - these were Coombe, Ivy and Gallows Conduits (Ivy is opened up once in a blue moon because of the extent of damage to it and Gallows is in private ownership.) The conduit consisted of two conduit houses where water collected, connected by an underground passage. A number of tunnels then ran into the conduits and down Kingston Hill to the Palace. The water in the conduits is phenomenally clear which is a testament to the purity of the water and the ingenuity of the Elizabethan engineering used to build the place.

    The front conduit building


    Inside the front conduit building




    The underground passage



    The rear Conduit building - here there is one central chamber, at the end of the passage and two chambers off it. In one of these the original feeder tunnel is visible, which presumably meant that this room was another collection pool.








    On the surface, there was originally a building which presumably sat over the central chamber but this is now derelict and a plastic roof has been put in.




    The guy who opened up for me told me that during WW2 the underground passage had been used as a rifle range (presumably the narrowness of the passage promoted accuracy!) and sure enough there were bullet holes in the back wall!
    Enjoy the pics - all comments welcome and more at http://s336.photobucket.com/albums/n...mbe%20Conduit/

    Cheers
    GDZ

    Last edited by godzilla73; 16th Apr 10 at 08:50.
    "You never planned on the bombs in the sand/Or sleeping in your dress blues."

  2. Thanks given by: Kaputnik, night crawler, oldscrote, RichardH, the_historian
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  4. #2
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    That was good, I liked that.:)
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  5. Thanks given by: godzilla73
  6. #3
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    Lovely to see the Elizabethan architectural style on the doors and windows inside. Tis a beautiful piece of work.
    Cheers, Godzy. :)
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