White rock boiler


White Rock boiler


A steam boiler was required on the side of Kilvey Hill Pentrechwyth to drive the Engine, for hauling the drams of slag from the White Rock Works for tipping. This railway crossed the main road near the works on an Arch way (now taken down) the engine quite a distance away to allow plenty of space for many years of tipping. The boiler had to be removed from ‘White Rock’ up to side of Kilvey hill a very difficult job in those days. The contract was given to a man by the name of Evan Hopkins haulage contraction & farmer, who had a name for keeping good horses always in splendid condition. You must remember there was no made road on the hill. It was on a Sunday when the decision to start on the journey. All the horses in the neighbourhood were hired to assist in the undertaking. The boiler a huge looking affair was mounted on two little bogies one on each end. Two very difficult and steep hills had to be counted in the route, which was planned to be done in stages, on Sundays as the hired horses were only obtainable on this day. It was a sight to see these horses all chained together straining in the collars to get it started. But they succeeded in their efforts to have it placed, ready for the next Sunday, staged 2, (Old ‘Harris Adulam’ was very disgusted to hear of this being done on a Sunday, and did not forget to tell Mr. Hopkins his family who were members of the chapel that he would never do it). The second stage was started the following Sunday, they were now leaving the Hard road to start on the hill when the front bogie got on to soft clayey ground and tipped over, the boiler rolled off luckily no one was hurt, plenty of suggestions were now the order, a big undertaking to put the boiler back on the bogie. One of the best suggestions was to have a traction Engine from one of these show firms. This tractor had a free wheel which would operate on its own steam, when the tractor was stationary, and with a strong wire cable attached could pull for a distance of about 30 to 40 yards. The engineer in charge had chains fixed around the boiler and it was literally rolled in short distances into position, and was in operation for many years before the works closed down. The tip is now being hauled away by lorry, the slag is a very good foundation for road-making. The works in operation for over a hundred years to make this tip (during the last twenty years more than a million tons has been taken away, a road has been made to give easy access for lorries.)