The Waterworks Inspection a.k.a.

The Waterworks Picnic Float 1937

This rather bizarre looking float was a having ago at the local council at the time,for their rather lavish annual waterworks inspection.Untill the waterworks was taken over in the 1960's by the Flyde Water Board,there was alot of bad feeling locally about the annual waterworks 'inspection'.The tradition was about 30 dignitaries walked around Grindleton and West Bradford Fell supposedly inspecting the local water supply.What local people really objected to was the amount of their money wasted on avery lavish 'day out'.An official photograph would be taken showing all that came along for the walk.After the party had checked out the 23 springs around the fell a lavish lunch was then provided by The Swan and Royal and then taken up to the Bungalow that was erected for the waterworks.By 1932 the waterworks inspection was particularly resented because alot of people in the Ribble Valley had had their unemployment benefit cut and hence alot of people found it hard to feed their families.Yet at the same time you had a bunch of local business people going on a nice day out walking around the countryside,just to inspect the water supply and then of course the a slap up dinner afterwards.This annual extravaganza was known as the 'waterworks picnic'.The tradition carried on untill 1962,when Clitheroe lost control of it's own water supply to the Flyde Water Board.The final waterworks' inspection' on March 27th 1963 went out with even more pomp and ceremony than usual.A local councillor of the day called the trip a 'a jaunt'.He claimed that only half of the people attending the 'jaunt' actually inspected the workings and the other half went straight to Pinewood on Grindleton Fell to the bungalow were the a slap up lunch and drinks were served.As you can see from the characters all dressed up above from the 1930's making a very amusing protest with the banner 'The Annual Waterworks Inspection - More refreshments this year and nothing on the rates'.This photograph was taken on Salthill Road just by Kendal Road.On the left is a building that is not there now and is today car parking space for the tyre depot,that at the time of this photograph use to be a small methodists chapel.
Another character dressed up as a local dignitary from the Waterworks Inspection Float walking around,having a laugh and making a point at the same time.The banner around his waist reads 'Waterworks Picnic'.