On Friday the 11th of November members and friends met at Llanwrda Hall to hear Richard Rees speak on “London County Council’s plan to steal the River Towy”.

The speaker was introduced by Vice Chairman Dylan Rees. Richard Rees is a railway and civil engineering enthusiast and is a well known motor engineer in the long established family business in Llanwrda. The lecture centred around a scheme in 1898 when it was proposed to create ten dams in the Towy and Irfon valleys, thereby supplying London with up to 415 million gallons of water per day. The chief engineer of London County Council, Sir Alexander Richardson Binnie would have overseen an engineering feat which would have brought water to London, a distance of 168 miles, with 45 tunnels, some as long as 15 miles at a total cost of £30 million.

The scheme was led by typical Victorian arrogance and had it been successful, would have meant hundreds of farms, houses, places of worship and whole communities would have been covered in water. It was indeed good fortune that the scheme was rejected by Parliament. There was much opposition by many members of Parliament who represented areas both in London and Wales. The speaker was thanked for his graphic presentation and depth of research which was quite remarkable.

Jeremy John