Thursday, 20 June 2019

History of old ponds

A BOOK about the history of Greenmoor Ponds in Woodcote has been written by three residents.

Woodcote’s Water, Yesterday and Today by Sam Peates, Susan Maguire and Sue Sandford explains how the ponds off Greenmore used to be Woodcote’s main water source but frequently dried up because they are on high and porous ground.

Residents campaigned for a reservoir to be dug in the early 1900s and in the meantime resolved the problem by storing large amounts of rainwater individually.

Crowmarsh Rural District Council, then the village’s local authority, eventually allowed construction of the neighbouring reservoir and this supplied Woodcote and surrounding villages for many years.

The site, now owned by Thames Water, has been disused for decades and was earmarked for 20 new houses under Woodcote’s neighbourhood plan in 2014. It is currently the subject of a planning application for a number of mobile homes.

Mrs Maguire started researching the book as she is a member of the village conservation group, which has carried out restoration projects at the ponds.

Mr Peates helped write it up as he has written several books about local walks.

He said: “This has been a four- or five-year project as we’re all busy people but it has been worthwhile and well received. We don’t expect to sell large volumes but there is definitely interest and it’s a story worth telling.”

The book costs £4 and can be purchased from Woodcote library.

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