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Water Tower (1885), Goole
Goole Docks, Goole, East Yorkshire, UK
Water Tower (1885), Goole
associated engineer
Not known
date  1881 - 1885
UK era  Victorian  |  category  Water Tower/Tank  |  reference  SE740234
ICE reference number  HEW 921
photo  PHEW, courtesy ICE
The earliest constructed of a pair of interesting water towers rising above the flat landscape of Goole, to the east of Leeds in East Yorkshire. Both were constructed to provide the necessary water pressure to ensure an effective water supply for the town. The 1885 red brick tower (on the left in the photo) is heritage listed but long disused.
The two water towers at Goole are locally known as the Salt and Pepper Pots — with the 1885 one as the 'pepper'. Alongside it is the 'salt', constructed in the 20th century in reinforced concrete, and painted white.
The 1885 cylindrical tower is of good quality red brick, laid in English bond. It supports a 9.1m diameter cast iron header tank inside its upper drum, capable of storing 136,400 litres of water. The maximum water level of the tank is 43.7m above ground level.
The base of the tower is plain, stepped and chamfered where it meets the main drum. The entrance to the interior is on the west side, through a sheet metal door in a round-headed opening. The main drum features 12 elongated recesses in its brickwork, maintaining the tower's the strength to support the tank but reducing the number of bricks required. Slit openings in the tower and the drum provide light for the interiors.
The upper drum surrounding the tank is also plain, with a chamfered cornice, and includes a parapet completed by two courses of darker ashlar masonry. The dome that can be seen on top of the tower is the roof of the tank, constructed in sheet metal, and encircled by a narrow walkway. An internal timber staircase provides access.
In the 20th century, the tower proved inadequate for the water supply demand, and the adjacent concrete tower was completed in 1927. The 1885 tower was (probably) taken out of commission in the 1970s, and was Grade II listed in 1978.
Nicholas Pevsner, writing in Yorkshire: The West Riding (1967), notes that Goole’s water towers are said to "represent the spirit of their respective ages convincingly".
Research: ECPK
reference sources   CEH North

Water Tower (1885), Goole