Being so close to the ground we notice things the humans often miss. This was the case a few days ago when we spotted this Environment Agency benchmark stud in Carlisle.
Measuring around 20mm, about the size of a 2p piece, the silver coloured stud would go unnoticed by the hundreds of people using the nearby Hadrian’s Wall footpath.
Positioned between the River Eden and the nearby Environment Agency monitoring station at the Sheepmount, we can only assume it is used as a fixed point to measure water levels from.
Assorted white measuring poles litter the area whilst overhead metal ropes cross the river span from a brick shed on this riverbank to a pulley on the opposite side.
Explaining what goes on here is a recently installed information board. The Sheepmount Hydrometry Station, to give it it’s full title, measures the speed of the River Eden and its depth at frequent intervals. This data is then fed back up telephone lines to a central point where it is collated and published.
A quick read of the sign board indicates that a current flow meter, which looks a bit like a bright yellow tadpole, is deployed on the overhead wires towards the middle of the river.
The boffins can then work out how much water is passing past this point at a given time.
One amazing statistic this device revealed was that during the floods in the City during 2005 the River Eden could have filled an Olympic sized swimming pool in only two seconds. Or put another way the river flow was estimated at 1,500,000 litres per second.
Until next time
Licks and wags
Rufus and Charlie