Saturday, 10 September 2011

The village pump

We haven't had an 'old' and 'new' comparison lately - and I know how much you like those!  Here is a photo, dated about 1890, of the Top Pump in the village of Heptonstall, and one of the same scene today.  Before piped water was introduced, every town and village in Britain had wells and pumps. Heptonstall had four public pumps and this one remains, reasonably well-preserved.  I don't think it still works though.


In times of drought, the pumps were locked and only opened for short time in the morning and evening.  The villagers used to line up their empty cans, marked with their initials, until the pump was opened again.  Diane, a few days ago, commented that she thought maybe I'd like to have lived in Victorian times - but, though I find history interesting, I'm very glad I don't have to queue up for and carry water or suffer the other harsh privations of those times.  Sometimes it's hard to believe how relatively recently daily life was so different - or to remember that, for many people in the world, things are still like that.

8 comments:

  1. What a difference that splash of colour makes!
    Thanks for this timely reminder Jenny of how blessed many of us are today and what comparatively easy and privileged lives we lead.

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  2. With us so spoiled today, just opening a tap, Victorian times seem to be very romantic. But I agree with you, I prefer to live now and admire history !
    What I love in the UK is that so many old houses still have the same look since centuries but are modernized inside ! That's a wonderful solution.

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  3. I do like the then and now photos. And I like that the town pump has been preserved, even if it does no longer work. But aren't you glad your water also is treated instead of constantly living with the risk of disease from the pump? A well here in Rugby was the source of a typhoid outbreak in 1881 that killed several residents and sickened others. Jim

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  4. It's amazing how different and alike the pictures look at the same time! I'm glad I didn't live back then either.

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  5. Imagine carrying all your water home in buckets! it would make you be a lot more careful with it.

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  6. Just the kind of photo I like! And I like looking at the Victorian-era...from a distance...I like living in a time of modern conveniences and antibiotics.

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  7. I laugh whenever anyone mentions "the good old days"... how short our memories or rosy our glasses. This would have been a super place to gave the mouse over - then and now. Email me if you want me to give you the HTML for future use. And yes, I do wish I could mouse over our grey skies. LOL!

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  8. Oh this is so fun to see! The addition of the windows is nice to see along with the splash of color. ~Lili

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