The Men of the M62
Urban myths are great - they're entertaining and that's why they are perpetuated. One myth close to home surrounds the farm house on the M62.
I can see why motorway enthusiasts get a buzz on the M62. Even I do. The highest point thrills me. 372 metres above sea level. And what's this? Yep, further on towards it's denouement near Hull it becomes the lowest motorway. There are no junctions numbered 1, 2 or 3. AT 107 miles long it's the closest we have to a coast to coast motorway in the country. The largest fixed arch in the Northern hemisphere. I'm starting to get into this road nerd malarkey.
The reason for those missing junctions is that it was designed to end, or begin, in Liverpool and that didn't happen.
The remit of the road was it was to never close. Situated as it was across the pennines, amongst bleak terrain and weather.
Because of the height of this Pennine section the only viable option was the blast through rock to create a dam, the majority of the route lay over a peat bog which wouldn't support the road. Machines were actually sunken in the bog so the peat had to be removed. There was almost 12 million cubic yards of peat.
The Wild family, one of only a dozen inhabitants living in the area at the time, endured years of quarry explosins and a choking fine dust that followed. Work was 12 hours a day and 7 days a wekk.
People would visit the site as a day out, tourists would come to visit on coaches each weekend to watch the massive works being undertaken, particulalry the creation of the dam by removing 7 million yards of rock. It was the construction of a lifeline for many who could never make it across the pennines in bad weather.
Largest single span bridge in Europe at the time, the (walkers bridge - there are two birdges) bridge is dwarfed by the landscape and often overlooked and unappreciated. THere's a strange optiocal illusion of sorts at work wherein it's impossible to really appreciate the size of the bridge. Fighting the climate to build the bridge (which was built for walkers after oppostition to the original route aused disrutption) was a feat of enormity, this section of the country the rain is whisked into a frenxy by the wind and layout of the land and it can rain upwards. Because of work often being called off 24 hour working days to make up for it, working in the cloud and under flodllights It cost sa million punds per mile for this section.
Flooded village! divers? http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scammonden apparently just a mill is under it http://johndavies.typepad.com/walking_the_m62/2007/10/grace-under-pre.html this mill is a ruin in the woods now kind of http://newsfromnowhere1948.blogspot.co.uk/2010/08/strangely-appropriate-treasure-map.html a farm bulldozed for the dam http://thebakersofscammonden.co.uk/?page_id=81 http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Scammonden Apparently the foundations of the village were last visable in 1994 at low water.
Over the M62 motorway is 120 ft high with a 410 ft span, and the largest single-span bridge in the UK and one of the largest in Europe. The length of the deck, including the approach sections, is 660 ft.
The bridge and the motorway were designed by Colonel Stuart Maynard Lovell. It carries the B6114 over the cutting which is 180 ft deep and for which 4 million cubic yards of rock were blasted out. 9,000 tons of concrete were used in the construction.
A new blasting technique had to be developed so as to produce rocks of a size which could be used for the embankment of Scammonden Dam.
In 1970, it was decided to convey school-children over the bridge in taxis when it was windy
Aka Scammonden Dam, Scammonden Water. This took 5 years to build and 2 years to fill with water. Several villages were inundated in its construction.
The reservoir was opened by HM the Queen on 14th October 1971.
Scammonden Dam, on the M62 motorway, is the largest earth-filled dam in Europe, 245 ft high and 0·9 mile in length, and the motorway runs across the head of the dam. 4.5 million cubic yards of rock fill and a clay core were used to built the head. The reservoir has a capacity of 1730 million gallons. The section of the motorway which crosses the dam is 242 ft above the valley floor
Huddersfield has benefited from an organized water supply since 1743. From 1868 to 1897 a massive programme of municipal reservoir building took place,yet by 1960 it was clear that more supplies were needed. The remote Scammonden Valley was flooded and the Dam was completed in 1971.In a unique cooperative venture between motorway engineers and the Huddersfield Water Authority,the dam was designed to carry the M62 motorway across the valley on the crest of its embankment for 615 metres.This under- taking needed a Private Members Bill through Parliament.The construction took over three years.Even appalling weather conditions failed to halt its progress.The reservoir can hold 1700 million gallons and has a surface area of 104 acres.It supplies 6 million gallons daily; half the area's needs.
The land was unstable and it was cheaper to build around it.
The men who built it, those who lived on it, those whose legacy was flooded by it.
bridge named after the village tha was flooded to formt he reservoir!
Dream art visiable in st helens
It's even built so that if it snows the wind will blow the snow off the carriageway.