Plymouth (Drake's) Leat,
built in 1591 under the aegis of Sir Francis Drake. It originated at a
head weir on the River Meavy (now under Burrator Reservoir) and ran as
far as Sutton Pool in Plymouth. It fed various conduits etc. along its route, plus
supplying a number of Drake's woollen mills. The conduits in Plymouth
were later replaced, over time, by pipes. Eventually, the leat fed Drake's Place Reservoir, built as two reservoirs in 1825 and 1828, just up the
hill from Plymouth University on Tavistock Road, although the reservoir supply is now by modern
pipes. The reservoir is the only open reservoir remaining in Plymouth
and is no longer used as a water supply; it is solely a local amenity.
The leatceased carrying water into the
city when Burrator Reservoir was opened in 1898.
These photos and videos were made on a misty day.
Some of the photographs below can be clicked on to see a video version.
Devonport Leat, close to where it comes out from under the A386 road just on the Plymouth side of the turning into Yelverton Cricket Club. Click the photo to see a movie.
Devonport Leat as seen from the small road bridge on the road that turns in almost opposite the turn-off for Crapstone, between the bollards in the centre of the road. The two upright stones are believed to function as a backflow valve to limit water flow one way or the other, rather like a bull's-eye stone? Click the photo to see a movie.
The wall at the left is part of the small road bridge. The water was flowing from the left in Devonport Leat and running out towards the top of the photograph into a pipe that runs into Plymouth Leat. Click the photo to see a movie.
Plymouth Leat, showing the inflow from Devonport Leat. Click the photo to see a movie.
Looking along Plymouth Leat, towards Clearbrook. Click the photo to see a movie.
Plymouth Leat looking towards Yelverton, at the point where it flows into private fields (which are behind the camera, see next photo). This location is at the end of the tarmac road (Chub Tor Road). Click the photo to see a movie.
As previous photograph but looking towards Clearbrook.
Plymouth Leat after passing the Clearbrook car park, looking back towards Clearbrook.
More flooding between Clearbrook car park and Roborough.
As previous photograph.
Reflections on a misty day.
As previous photograph.
Plymouth Leat was examined at the western edge of the Common where it leaves the National Park and runs towards Plymouth - it was completely dry. The water must be running out of one or more breaches that can be seen in the leat, possibly the first one at SX 52257 64907 above Goodameavy. ***
*** This was investigated on 23rd December 2012.
For those who persist to the very end - here is your reward, a rare appearance in front of the camera of the secretive Dartmoor Goony bird .....
Showing the depth of water at this time ..... Click the photo to see a movie.