Pictures from the Weir Pool (The Willows)

IF you look at the picture at the top of the page in the same way you would view one of those old ultra-wide school photographs - that is, with the left-hand side looking north-west and the right-hand side towards east - you will be able to get your bearings on this widescreen view of the Weir Pool. That is, a panorama of 135 degrees or so.

   The Weir what ? Like me, you might know this area as The Willows, a name that goes back many decades. But it became known as the Weir Pool - accurate enough, but not so poetic.

   The trouble is that there are many willows in the riverside area - the new Nantwich Riverside Project people grew a lot more of the trees for basket-weaving purposes, etc - and so it is perhaps not right for one particular area to hog the name.

     In my childhood, this area was popular with youngsters enjoying sunny school summer holidays splashing about in the water. Mind you, the polio epidemic of the 1950s-'60s didn't do much for its popularity (water was a source of the polio virus). 

     The picturesque area just below the weir is the River Weaver taking a detour round the mill that is to the left of the pictures which include the weir. 

The upper level of the river flowed on to the mill and

drove the mill's grinding wheels as it plunged

 

Two similar views of The Willows - er, sorry, Weir Pool - from the Riverside (the road on the Millfields housing estate) area.  See this page for the area in wetter times.   

through the mill race. The water still follows that route, but there is no mill wheel to turn.

   To me, there has always been a bridge over the weir and so I was surprised to hear later that the bridge had been removed by the 1980s.

   But it returned as part of an enhancement of the River Weaver valley. And I am pleased that a new

 

path on Mill Island - brought in as a by-pass route for the use of Millfields Estate residents when the old mill site was the venue of the Nantwich Food Festival, etc - follows the route of the old path across the riverside area that I used daily as a young man. Previously the bridge was reached across the grass on the edge of Mill Island, next to the upper part of the river.

 

   

Above: Two residents of the Weir Pool

Pictured left: A party of volunteers spent a day stabilising this bank of the Weir Pool. They hammered stout stakes into the riverbed and then weaved willow between them, making a barrier. Choir rolls impregnated with aquatic plants were laid in the pool.

   
The new bridge over the weir   Water cascades over the weir   The new path to the weir bridge

Lake and river picturesTales from the Riverside

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