I live in a camper van with a West Highland Terrier for company.
My passion is creating images but it is a work in progress.
I am always willing to share what knowledge I have and can be contacted through the comments on this post or e-mail ADRIAN

Sunday 18 September 2011


I haven’t been back to the pumping station at Tees Cottage today. I’m feeling very lethargic so apart from a couple of miles with the dogs I’ve not been out. I am giving the van a polish up, even this is an effort. I did sneak out for a couple of pints last night, I wonder if I should have had the full half gallon.

Here are a few details left over from yesterday.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  This shows the depth of water in the Tees……………..saved the lazy devils going out with a lead line.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAI’m not sure whether this wonderful recorder is recording water pumped to the town or water pumped out of the river. I suspect the former as the latter would only be of interest to anoraks like me.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  This is a little gem. The counter is attached to the main beam supporting trunnion (axle) and as the beam rocks the pendulum swings and counts the number of cycles the engine has accomplished. These will enlarge but you have to wait for the page to fully load. It has registered 7,650,016. The Perspex is to stop little fingers being severed.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA    The makers plate………….I don’t know who screwed this up but it’s most unusual to find screw heads out of line on anything built during this period. Picky, I know, it is just as easy to screw  straight as not. I could have rephrased that more delicately.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERAThe words and music.

I noticed I under estimated the weight of the beam by five tons.  It took three of them to carry it up to the top floor!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  This is the Porter Governor referred to above. It is driven by bevel gears from the flywheel on the right and the faster it spins the further out it’s balls fly lifting the weight and shutting off the steam……..that’s automation!

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA  This is the pump supplying Darlington or two thirds of it.

OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA     And a little of what it produces now. Wouldn’t like to bet against this in a highest up the wall contest. A missed opportunity, I should have asked a little boy to stand in front of the railings!

_9177532_3_4_5_6_tonemapped_edited-1       The Hornsby Gas Engine in all it’s HDR glory. Hopeless in near dark and without a tripod. It is open again next month and I’ll try and get back. It really warrants a proper seeing to with multiple flash guns, softboxes and reflectors. Anyone interested in a visit? I’m sure if asked nicely they would allow access before or after the official opening hours. In exchange for some of the images.

I’m away down to Derbyshire tomorrow and then to try and find a colliery over Chesterfield way. I may or may not have internet.

Have a good week.


  1. Adrian, another interesring set of words and images.

    Speaking as a time served engineer, a mis-aligned screw always gives me a problem!....[;o)

  2. Another lovely read Adrian. Great images and information.

  3. Sorry I ment interesting!! I sometimes have trouble tryping!...<:o(

  4. Great pictures you've taken, especially the first one. Feeling a bit under the weather eh, its pissing down here.

  5. Excellent post again Adrian. That's certainly some incredible machinery.
    Hope you feel better soon.

    Love Bobs comment lol

  6. Fantastic pictures of old machines :) I like it very much :)

  7. Trevor, it's funny what annoys. I can remember filing a cube squarish and deciphering steam engine diagrams.........Scraping lathe beds....a nightmare it was!
    Don't correct spelling I'm anorexic.

    Andrew, a rehash this time. It is a good place.

    Bob, cheeky you are. You are the best entitled to mock the sick. Great comment.

    Keith, when Bob gets his words in the right order he's a real gem of a bloke. How he keeps so cheerful is beyond me.
    It is a smashing spot and almost within my comfort zone. I know most of what I see.

  8. Thank you for the photos. I've always been fascinated by the Victorian era :)

  9. Olga, You are more than welcome.

  10. This and the previous post give a great insight in to the way the Victorians used machinery to undertake mundane tasks and at the same time added decoration to embellished it. Really enjoyed this short series.

  11. John, I really enjoy these places but they are almost universally pitch black. A grand day out and very reasonable at £4.00p.

  12. Your comment about the screwheads reminds me of the War Memorial I saw in Inverary recently. Must blog it. The lettering was out of alignment.

  13. John, it's because they weren't learned.. ..Proper! A tiny example of what annoys me. The rest of the place is grand. A two minute job to sort with a screw driver and a ladder, both have been around a while. I suspect it has been taken down for a polish and re-black and they left a muppet to do the scewing.

  14. ADRIAN, great photos as always. While my "fix" for the lightbox popup works most of the time I know waiting for the page to fully load can be a pain. Fortunately some clever soul has figured out an even better workaround. I've updated my blog post with instructions so if you are willing to try editing the HTML version of your template then you could banish the bug for good.

  15. Mark, many thanks. It works. Yippee!

  16. Thinking about what kind of places these are with all the lighting problems etc, the last shot is a beauty.

  17. Jay, the light is always a nightmare in these spots. Sodium, natural and none seems to be the way of it.

  18. Was up early this morning to see if I could catch up with life in Blogland. As is so often the case after two hours I'd managed all sorts of things except those things needing my attention. Attention span of a gnat, that's my problem. Anyway I was fascinated by the first three items; particularly the third. There is something more re-assuring and enduring with them than an electronic readout. Ho hum.

  19. Graham, would cost a lot more to produce today. I agree. If they stops a squirt of paraffin or a gentle tap and it they would be away again.
    The world has turned upside down a horologist is regarded as worthless whilst a banker is regarded as a God or paid as one.
    It will get worse as even Labour politicians are now politicians from the cradle. never seen real skill in any medium. Nine tenths of them.
    If ever there was a reason not to send ones issue to Eton one only has to look at the clowns in charge of us.