Memories of Scar House reservoir wanted as it celebrates centenary
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Last updated Oct 11, 2021
Scar House reservoir

People are being invited to submit memories, photos and documents relating to Scar House reservoir, which is celebrating its 100th anniversary.

When the reservoir was built, it was seen as one of the most ambitious civil engineering projects in Britain.

It was the focal point of the Nidd Valley reservoir scheme, and had a huge impact on Nidderdale, with hundreds of workers moving to the area to work on the scheme.

A temporary village called Scar was built to house the workforce and their families during the construction of the reservoir from 1921 to 1936. At its peak, the village housed 1,250 people.

The village had luxuries, such as flushing toilets and a 600-seat cinema. It had its own tennis courts, a fire brigade, hospital and fish and chip shop. A 13 mile (21km) light railway from Pateley Bridge was also installed.


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Elizabeth Bishop, information officer at Nidderdale AONB, said:

“As the village buildings were sold off and dismantled in the 1930s, nothing much remains of this special place. It would be fantastic if more information came to light on this anniversary to help tell more of its fascinating story.”

The reservoir, which supplies water to Bradford, is now owned by Yorkshire Water.

Lisa Harrowsmith, lead surveyor at Yorkshire Water, said:

“We would love to hear from you if you have family members who were involved in the construction at Scar House, or were affected by it. We’re looking for stories, photographs and any memorabilia relating to the construction or early years of the reservoirs life, to help us celebrate its 100th anniversary.

“The world is very different to when work began to build Scar House 100 years ago – but despite the reservoir’s age, it continues to play a key role in the water process.”

If you’d like to get involved in marking the centenary or have information you’d like to share, contact Nidderdale AONB at [email protected]


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