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This walk: 2013-3-27. Dousland water reservoir, Yennadon Quarry, Sir Thomas Tyrwhitt's horse-drawn tramway, hedge construction, granite setts, sewage works, The Old Halt, Iron Mine Lane, Meavy Iron Mine, Devonport Leat ('dry'), cattle creep, PCWW 1917 boundary stone, Burrator Halt, Burrator Dam, Devonport Leat (running), mallards, sluice, Lowery Crossing, PCWW 1917 boundary stone.

Walk details below - Information about the route etc.

Link to Google Satellite view of the area - the car park is at centre, near the top edge, on the west (left) edge of the wood. Burrator Quarry car park (used on other walks) is near the bottom edge, right of centre, left of "Burrator Wood".

Previous walk in this area: 4th Nov. 2009,


Covered reservoir at Dousland water treatment works - click here for Google aerial view.


Closer view.


Yennadon Quarry expansion .....


Zoomed view of the spoil heap.


The road down to 'Bryher'; Sir Thomas Tyrwhitt's horse-drawn tramway (opened 26th Sept. 1823) went down here to the right, to go through Dousland Plantation to Prince's Town .....


Looking the other way, onto the open moor.


Zoomed view from the previous photograph.


A nearby hedge of Yennadon stone (the lower, horizontal tiers) and granite (the upper, upright tier).


Quarry notice.


Horse-drawn tramway granite setts, with paired holes for fixing the rails (see the photos at the running end of Devonport leat below).


The entrance into Yennadon Quarry.


Part of SWW Dousland sewage works - click here for a Google aerial view.


The horse-drawn tramway went straight ahead, through where there is now a gate. 


The gate.


The view at SX 5412 6833 looking south (private road, access only to four properties) .....


The Old Halt - a property on the north side of the road .....


Overview ..... click here for the Google street view (you can drag the picture around sideways and click down the road etc).


From the same spot, looking east, up onto the moor, being the upper end of Iron Mine Lane .....


Remains of Meavy Iron Mine, leased from Maristow Estate in 1836 and worked for 20-25 years. There were open works plus adits and shafts down to 60 fathoms (360 feet!). Minerals found were iron ore, ochre and manganese.


Clapper bridge over Devonport Leat at approx SX 54200 68313, here 'dry'.


An old oak tree, in fine shape.


In the region of SX 542 679.


On the steam railway across Yennadon Down .....


Railway bed again, interesting feature to its left? Just ahead of here, at SX 54369 67883, the horse-drawn tramway crosses the steam railway. The reason for them not following the same route is that the earlier tramway could cope with tighter curves than could the steam railway, so the latter had to follow a more gentle-turning route.


Looking towards the embankment of the horse-drawn tramway - the water is partly ice-covered.


The railway bed.


Cattle creep, at SX 5459 67798, photo 1 .....


Cattle creep, photo 2; built because the railway cut cattle off from parts of the open moor.


"I am having a really bad .....


..... hair day!"


Railway cutting .....


Zoomed view ahead.


A South West Water stone (or PCWW - Plymouth Corporation Water Works stone) marking the edge of the catchment area for Burrator reservoir .....


Overview: the stone is located at SX 54866 67746.


The remains of Burrator Halt. The GWR railway was built in 1885 and the Halt in 1926, closing in 1956 when the line was closed  .....


Steps and kissing gate down to the reservoir (the etymology of the name is that the gate merely "kisses" (touches) the enclosure either side, rather than needing to be securely latched - and I thought it was all to do with good old fashioned philematology!) .....


I forgot to take this photograph, so here it is from an earlier walk, the steps up on the other side of the railway onto the open moor, with another kissing gate.


The old railway proceeding north'ish above Burrator reservoir.


© Crown copyright and database rights 2012  Ordnance Survey Licence number 100047373
Also, Copyright © 2005, Memory-Map Europe, with permission.

1900 edition Ordnance Survey 1 inch: 1 mile map, showing the GWR steam railway before Burrator Reservoir was constructed.


A seat along the way .....


The inscription.


Looking down on the dame, with Sheep's Tor behind .....


An exercise fanatic crossing the dam.


Notice on a gate passed on entering the woods.


The present-day working end of Devonport Leat; it used to take water into Devonport from 1801 until shortly after Burrator Reservoir came online in 1859 .....


Leat kerbing formed by granite setts taken from the horse-drawn tramway .....


"Plug hole" where water falls by gravity down the Burrator waterfall or cascade .....


There is a valve in line between the "plug hole" and the cascade that can be seen (presumably) in this photograph .....


Grill where water falls to the Dousland water works .....


Closer view. The water movements were confirmed this afternoon by a contact in South West Water. There are other possibilities depending on water quality - if the leat water is of poor quality then good quality water is pumped from Burrator reservoir to Dousland treatment works. Dousland now supplies water down to Crownhill (Plymouth), Tavistock and Princetown. This is the normal arrangement, however, in times of drought or poor quality, SWW can effect various water movements to maintain good drinking water.

For anyone interested in a more complete description of Devonport Leat, there is a dedicated web page HERE.

For those who remember the doll's head story e.g. as seen on 8th June 2011, there is a brand new image of the head (rather, a 30-year-old copy of the head) HERE.


A pair of mallards in the leat.


Approaching the road from the reservoir up to Lowery Cross (as opposed to Lowery crossing, see below).


Devonport Leat on the other side of the road. Along here, on the left, behind the new deer-proof fence, there was a work party planting hardwood saplings to replace the Japanese larch trees removed due to the recent disease caused by the fungus, Phytophthora ramorum.


Top end sluice to the chute that led down to the reservoir - we often saw it running in spate in times of heavy rain. It does not seem to be used in recent times, the bottom end is currently blocked by large logs from felled larch trees.


Discussing the Lowery Crossing, where the railway crossed the road and where there were level crossing gates tended by a family who lived in a three-bedroomed cottage lit by oil lamps. Arthur Maker was crossing-keeper 1937-1956 (when the line closed). He and his wife, Phyllis, had four children. They collected their water from Devonport Leat, had a vegetable garden and shopped twice a week in Yelverton. Four or five cars a day went through the crossing as well as four trains .....


The cottage waas on this site.


The cottage at Lowery Crossing


SWW water boundary stone at Lowery Cross car park, SX 54773 69243 .....


The SWW stone seen from the other side of the hedge i.e. the proper car park side.


Walk details

MAP: Red = GPS satellite track of the walk.

© Crown copyright and database rights 2012  Ordnance Survey Licence number 100047373
Also, Copyright © 2005, Memory-Map Europe, with permission.



The walk was easily reached by turning off the B3212 road near Dousland with easy parking at the  P  and yellow cross symbols on the map near the cross-roads at Lowery Cross.


Distance - 5.14 km / 3.19 miles.


All photographs on this web site are copyright ©2007-2016 Keith Ryan.
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