Penarth Dock, South Wales - 150 years - the heritage and legacy  
Penarth Dock, South Wales - the heritage & legacy . . .
Volume One - Into the Victorian Age - Activity at the docks . . .
Penarth Dock & Station - c. 1905
Dock and Harbour, Penarth.

"Penarth Dock & Station" c.1905. Two versions of a hand coloured postcard showing the River Ely with sky blue water; it wasn't, it was murky muddy brown in colour and appropriately named the "Ely Ooze" on some earlier maps. The water at the dock would have patches of coal dust either entirely covering the dock or in patches, just like an oil-slick. These images, portraying the docks as a sentimental picture postcard of the industrial age, would just not wash if you were a hobbler or trimmer at the docks! To the Victorian monied classes; the working class should and would have known its place! [025] [026] [028]

'Dock and Harbour, Penarth' postcard image courtesy of the Penarth Dock Collection. [001] [20170719]

The engine is a pannier tank engine which carried 'spare' water in the rectangular tanks mounted on each side of the fire-box and boiler. Water was pumped as and when required from these tanks to ensure the water-level in the boiler was maintained at a safe level. At most stations and all engine-sheds a water-crane or shute was provided with enabled the fireman to top up the water in the panniers whilst passengers were alighting. (see a typical example adjacent to the engine in the image above)

The supply of water to this appliance at Penarth Dock Station was fitted with a water softening and filtering apparatus which created a great deal of interest both within the UK and across the pond in the US. In 1889 a paper was published in London entitled:- 'Water Softening and Filtering Apparatus for Locomotive purposes at the Penarth Dock Station of the Taff Vale Railway Company.'

The Index to Current Engineering Literature published by the Association of Engineering Societies of Chicago states that it is : - 'A paper of some interest, by Wm. W. F. Pullen, Stud. Inst. C. E. Gives details of arrangements and cost of operation.' [518]


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