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A Walkabout in Broadstone

Broadstone is situated just north of Poole on the south coast of England, about 120 miles south west of London.

Map of UK

Broadstone is approached by turning right off the main Wimborne to Poole road (Gravel Hill) by a roundabout, onto Dunyeats Road or by a second roundabout (Darby's Corner) further down Gravel Hill onto Lower Blandford Road. Along Dunyeats road on the right is Broadstone Middle School.

Further details of the Middle School can be seen on their website at


Opposite the school is the water tower.

The history of Broadstone Water Tower is rooted in the latter half of the 19th century, indeed it formed an essential part of the then embryonic public supply to the wider conurbation of developing Poole. A brief résumé of the early history of Poole's public water supply is useful when considering the demands that brought about construction of the tower.

In the mid to late 1800's the majority of homes relied on private well supplies to meet their requirements for drinking, cooking and washing, with water raised by hand pump from a hand dug well; water quality and was variable and probably presented a significant hazard to the health of consumers. The Victorians recognised the potential benefits to public health through provision of reliable water supplies and the Board of Trade was given responsibility for regulating development of public water supplies, largely proposed by private enterprise. In 1859, Board of Trade records show approval of a scheme to satisfy the immediate needs of Poole and Parkstone. Poole Water Co. were granted permission to construct a scheme which collected surface water from gathering grounds in the Lilliput area, lifting the water to a new water tower in Mansfield Road, Parkstone, via a steam pumping plant. Today Parkstone Water Tower is not used as part of the modem distribution infrastructure but is preserved as a Grade II listed building. Poole's demands were further supplemented by similar gathering grounds to the south west of the Shah of Persia public house, with the water distributed via mains laid in Longfleet Road and North Road, linking with the gathering grounds established at Alderney Brickworks via Old Wareham Road.

You can read the complete article on Broadstone Water Tower by clicking here. The article was written by Nigel Martin, Wessex Water Distribution Mananger.

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Last Updated: 26th February 2011