Chorley Historical and Archaeological Society

News and Views

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Jan 2014 Feb 2014 Mar 2014 Apr 2014 May 2014 Jun 2014
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Jan 2014

Tue  28 Jan 2014

Joan, Rosemary and Boyd attended a meeting at Chorley Town Hall with Alistair Bradley, Chorley Council Executive Leader and Jamie Carson, Director of People and Places. The main subject was to discuss a small memorial garden feature to represent the now demolished underground Leyland Reservoir at Clayton-le-Woods. After opening the reservoir to the public during October 2013 the developer, Kingswood Homes of Southport, designed a garden feature where an information board could keep the memory of the reservoir alive.

The reservoir in Oct 2013

They did the design drawings for free but funding is now needed to build it. The favourite site is in the grounds of the adjacent Manor Road Primary School. Rosemary has approached various organisations for funding and the meeting with Chorley Council was to ask them to help out. Around £6,000 to £10,000 would be needed in total.
They kindly offered to provide temporary storage of the reservoir coping stones that will be re-cycled into the structure.
Also discussed was the general subject of Heritage in the Chorley area and how it can be recorded and stored. It was such a large subject that only a brief outline of possibilities could be discussed in the time available.

Jamie Carson, Joan, Rosemary and Alistair Bradley.

Tue 14 Jan 2014
Boyd Harris - People and Mountains of Inner Dolpo and Shey Gompa, Nepal.
Plus early explorers of the Himalayas.

The presentation began with a brief review of the early Himalayan explorers, in particular the highest mountains in Nepal, the highest being Mount Everest.
In 1856, the Great Trigonometric Survey of India established the height of Everest, then known as Peak XV, at 29,002 ft (8,840 m). The current official height is 8,848 m (29,029 ft). It was then officially the highest in the world. The mountain is also known locally as Sagarmatha in Nepal and Chomolungma in Tibet. Today's name of Mount Everest came from the Sir George Everest who was the Surveyor General of India (1830-1843). He retired before the altitude had been calculated and his name was used to name the mountain by his successor Andrew Waugh. Everest never saw the mountain named after him.

Col. Sir George Everest (1790 - 1843)

Andrew Scott Waugh (1810-1878) Surveyor General of India (1843-62) retired in 1862 was knighted and married Celia Whitehead of Uplands Hall, Walker lane, Fulwood. He ended his career as churchwarden at Broughton.
The first attempts to climb the mountain came from Tibet to the north as Nepal was closed to outside expeditions until 1950. The British made several attempts and in 1921 made a reconnaissance trek from Tibet.
The first expedition to pass over Everest came in 1933 when a British expedition flew two Westland bi-planes over the summit.

A Westland bi-planes approaches Everest in 1933

The mountain was eventually climbed by a British expedition in 1953 when Sir Ed Hillary (from New Zealand) and Sherpa Tenzing reached the summit.

The 1953 British expedition to Mount Everest.

For many years the remote Dolpo region of north-west Nepal was off limits to trekkers. It is now possible to trek there with a special permit. It was visited in the 1970s by the travel author Peter Matthiessen who’s subsequent book of his trek ‘The Snow Leopard’ won national book awards in 1979 and 1980.
Dolpo preserves one of the last remnants of traditional Tibetan culture. It can only be accessed via high passes which are closed by snow for almost half of the year.
Boyd’s trip followed partly in the footsteps of Peter Matthiessens’ journey over 40 years ago. Hardly anything had changed with the exception of some villages having large solar panel to power satellite communications.


No bridges for river crossings

Snowfield camp

Shey Gompa interior


Mon  06 Jan 2014

This afternoon called at the Back Lane building site where the Leyland underground reservoir used to be. After it's demolition the builder started filling it in during Nov and Dec 2013. Recent rainfall has started to fill it with water again.