Flooding at Claverton Pumping Station is an almost annual event. Back to the early 1800s the building has flooded most winters, often multiple times each year. When the building is flooded we can do little but wait for the water to recede and then clean up the mess. Claverton Enginekeepers have done this for centuries, safe in the knowledge that if it was wet enough to flood the pumphouse the canal was not going to run dry!

As a museum we prepare for the winter floods by emptying the downstairs of the building to stop items becoming waterborne. Waterborne items can damage the building and machinery. We empty the building in mid October, and replace items through March, ready for the April opening. This year we have had a very wet year with our raised winter storage being flooded. With heavy rain threatening through March we have not been able to get the building ready to open for the 8th of April.

On the Saturday 1st of April we were hit by our 10th flood of this winter flood season. Unlike the very small flood we had in March this is a fairly serious flood. By Saturday afternoon there was almost 3 foot of water in the building:

1st of April Flood

As the rain stopped on Saturday we hoped the level would start falling quickly on Sunday. As of Sunday lunchtime there over 3 foot of water in the building and it has not yet started to go down.

2nd of April Flood

We have had to cancel the open day on the 8th of April. The openday on the 11th of April remains unlikely, but every effort will be made to open in some form.

This closure comes at a bad time, we are raising money to repair the cracks in the cast iron of the waterwheel. Open days are normally our main source of income. If you are able to please consider donating to our crowdfunding for the repair of the waterwheel.