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Reservoir levels around Sheffield

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Has anyone been for a walk/bike around Ladybower/Derwent/Howden recently? And Redmires for that matter...

How are they looking? I rode around from Fairholmes in the summer and it was pretty scary to see how low it was. The lowest I'd seen in years. Having been quite damp recently I'm hoping they've gone up a centimetre or two.

 Jenny C 23 Nov 2022
In reply to ChrisBrooke:

Not been to either of those, but Agden and Broomhead are filling up nicely. 

 laurie 23 Nov 2022
In reply to ChrisBrooke:

Still low but maybe just under half full.   drove past them on Sunday

In reply to ChrisBrooke:

Sheffield I don't know but I was up in the dales last Friday, roundhill was flowing down the o erspill but Leighton that it feeds in to was maybe only 2/3rds, certainly lower than I expected at this time of year.

Edit to add, Thornton Steward was close to full as well but that's only a small one. 

Post edited at 12:32
In reply to ChrisBrooke:

Here you go. Filling up nicely

https://www.stwater.co.uk/about-us/reservoir-levels/

 G. Tiger, Esq. 23 Nov 2022
In reply to MG:

https://riverlevels.uk/ladybower-reservoir-ladybower-reservoir-lvl

Risen a couple of metres since Friday last week. The rain we had overnight should keep it filling nicely.

Not sure how long it takes to trickle down from Derwent and Howden 

GTE

 Graeme Hammond 23 Nov 2022

I thought the point was that they filled over the course of a winter when there is more rain so that there is enough water during the summer when there is less rainfall months to keep both the river running and for human consumption. If rainfall was constant and matched usage there would no point having them.

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In reply to Graeme Hammond:

Yes, but the balance is based on historic use and rainfall.  Due to climate change both are changing, so it's a bit of a worry, particularly after the very dry summer we just had.

5
In reply to MG:

Oh great, thanks for that, as if I don’t enough sites to waste time on endlessly already!
Half as much water in that reservoir Sept/Oct compared to 2019

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 Justaname 23 Nov 2022
In reply to MG:

They're planning on extending the storage there by building additional dams in the valley, or creating whole new reservoirs.  The plan may be to build additional dams in front of the existing ones, or maybe even create a new reservoir by damming the valley at Slippery Stones or Westend (so the speculation goes).

Post edited at 14:19
 daWalt 23 Nov 2022
In reply to ChrisBrooke:

Weren't the summer months some of the driest on record?

I'd be more surprised if the reservoirs were full.

It was barely 2 months ago there was hot topic discussion on the gov's refusal to promote water saving while the EA were saying "drought", and the water companies were resolutely avoiding any measure that would reduce consumption. ("Hot" is relative for this topic, but you'd soon know about it when your taps are switched off and your given a couple of water bottles to last you the week)

1
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

Yes, but my (completely anecdotal) experience, having cycled round there with the kids most summers, is that I'd never seen them so low. This recent patch of weather has made me think how seldom I've actually needed to put on a rain jacket or grab a brolly in the last few years. 

1
In reply to MG:

> Here you go. Filling up nicely

Perfect. Just what I was after. Thanks.

 Holdtickler 23 Nov 2022
In reply to ChrisBrooke:

I was surprised just now how low one above Lancaster was. We don't have a shortage of rain up here...

 wintertree 23 Nov 2022
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

> I thought the point was that they filled over the course of a winter when there is more rain so that there is enough water during the summer when there is less rainfall months to keep both the river running and for human consumption.

That's one purpose.

Sometimes they're used for a different purpose - to provide a buffer to hold then more gradually release storm surges, to protect downstream lands from flooding.  This clearly needs them to be less than full.

Regardless, we've seen exceptionally low levels across most of the country in rivers, reservoirs and groundwater after an exceptionally dry year.

If the reservoirs exit winter 22/23 lower than they exited winter 21/22 (a distinct possibility) and we have another dry year, things start to look a bit hairy.

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 hang_about 23 Nov 2022

They are still very low for the time of year, but it has been lobbing it down. As shown in the links above, they are lower now (after some very heavy rain) than they normally are at the end of the summer in years before 2022. Also, they are normally nearly full in late Nov.

If things keep up, they'll be fine, but if we have a dryish winter, then we're in for real shortages.

1
 Jenny C 23 Nov 2022
In reply to wintertree:

Also water authorities move water around so you can sometimes see daily fluctuations, plus some of our local ones are low for maintenance. There are also those used for hydroelectric (not round Sheffield that I know of) which again can fluctuate considerably.

Really pleasantly surprised at how quickly see have seen them come up. I've never taken as much interest as in the last 18 months since starting swimming, and towards the end of August it was getting very worrying as everywhere was so low.

 Fat Bumbly2 23 Nov 2022
In reply to ChrisBrooke:

Fire up the Ambassador!

In reply to ChrisBrooke:

Got a view of Ewden & More Hall reservoirs yesterday (Sunday 27th Nov). Ewden now looks full-ish although nothing coming down spillway I think. More Hall is still only around half full (it's downstream of Ewden).

 deepsoup 19:45 Mon
In reply to Duncan Beard:

Where there's a 'flight' of reservoirs, I guess it's a deliberate policy to keep one fuller than another to minimise the losses through evaporation.  I've often noticed More Hall getting very low while Broomhead is still relatively full.  (One full and one empty reservoir exposes a smaller surface area of water to the air than two half empty ones.)

At Ladybower they seem to do it the other way around, Howden already seemed to be virtually empty this summer while the levels in Derwent and Ladybower were still looking relatively healthy.

 Will Hunt 20:41 Mon
In reply to deepsoup:

Reservoirs in a chain often have different purposes and are managed accordingly. The bottom reservoir will be a compensation reservoir, there to pay out a steady flow to the catchment below and ensure the river doesn't dry up. These reservoirs might never, or only very rarely, be used for supply.

We had 6 consecutive months of below average rainfall this year, hence hosepipe bans (still in effect in Yorkshire). The big lake thing is only one part of a reservoir collection system. The other part is the catchment that feeds it - think of it as a sponge surrounding the reservoir. When the sponge is dry rainfall will soak into it, with only a little runoff generated and only a little water leaking out of it into the reservoir. When the sponge is full then no more water can soak in and runoff will be generated, there will also be lots of leakage from the sponge into the reservoir. We've had some rain recently but most of it isn't falling in the catchment. We're still filling up the sponge.

Post edited at 20:42
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