20-Sep-2009 -- Continued from 53°N 1°W.
We spent four weeks in the United Kingdom visiting cousins. As well, we managed to visit eight confluence sites to add to those we've visited back home in Canada and some in the United States. This is the fifth of eight visits in the UK.
We are on our way to Wales to spend a few days. On the way we stopped to find our third confluence on the 53rd Latitude in the UK. On the DCP site we read that Mr. Ratcliff, the landowner, would like advance notice when people would be visiting his property. Alan had a letter ready for him and the day after we arrived in Britain he mailed it.
It was sunny and around 15°C at 11:00 am when we arrived in the historic market town of Cheadle on the south edge of the Peak District. Cheadle has depended upon agriculture and industry through the years. The historic industries have been coal mining, silk and textile weaving, and the brass and the copper industry of nearby Froghall and Oakamoor.
The Cheadle Coalfield covers an area of approximately 20 square miles. Although coal has been mined there for several hundred years it was at its busiest in the 19th Century. The 1880 edition of the Ordnance Survey shows 66 coal mines in the area. It is interesting that the Bower Family of Harewood Hall were local coalmasters for a number of years and owned the Woodhead Colliery. Harewood Hall Farm next to Harewood Hall is where this confluence is located.
We drove up the lovely tree lined lane towards Harewood Hall. Workmen were there doing renovations on the big home. Across the lane was the farm, looking a little old and worn. We pulled up by the farmhouse and got out. Near the fence of the neighbouring field was a group of cows with a man standing near the gate. It was Mr. Ratcliff. He had received our letter so we were welcomed on his property. After visiting with him he offered to walk with us to a gate in his farmyard. He seemed very pleased when we invited him to accompany us to find the confluence.
We walked through the gate and past some farm buildings and three tractors. The confluence was found just past the buildings. After taking the confluence photos Mr. Ratcliff posed beside Alan for a photo. He is a friendly man who does not seem adverse to people looking for the confluence on his property. I believe it is because he has had some bad luck with vandals causing destruction on the farm that he wants advance warning of people visiting his property.
On to the next one, 53°N 3°W