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Rivelin - Yorkshire Water carpark

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 Capricorn One 06 Jun 2022

The Yorkshire Water carpark most people use for Rivelin is now locked at 18:00 sharp. (We had a couple of cars locked in last week and a very unhappy keyholder to let us out.) Local BMC reps are aware. 

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 gethin_allen 06 Jun 2022
In reply to Capricorn One:

Not sure why this is a BMC issue, it's been the case for a long time that they lock the gate and there is a sign saying this.

For a while they would just loop the chain over the top of the post to make it look locked but you could still get out. This obviously wasn't enough to stop people taking the piss and now they lock it properly. You can park on the lane just further down past the house and I've never had any trouble doing this.

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 remus Global Crag Moderator 06 Jun 2022
In reply to gethin_allen:

> Not sure why this is a BMC issue, it's been the case for a long time that they lock the gate and there is a sign saying this.

Seems a shame that the gate is locked at 1800 when it's currently light until 2200. As you say there is some space on the lane but it's pretty limited (5 or 6 cars) and there's very little alternative parking in the area.

 PaulJepson 06 Jun 2022
In reply to remus:

I've never had a problem finding a space in front of the woods. If it's full then you'd probably want to go somewhere else as the crag will be rammed. 

10
In reply to gethin_allen:

Not really sure why its taking the piss to want to stay there after 6 o'clock. There's a height barrier so no vans are getting in anyway.

In reply to pancakeandchips:

No tall vans that is.

 Graeme Hammond 06 Jun 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

> I've never had a problem finding a space in front of the woods. If it's full then you'd probably want to go somewhere else as the crag will be rammed. 

Not necessarily, the carpark is well used by local walkers, runners etc, on many occasions I've been the carpark has been rammed but the crag almost empty. If you use the same logic you'd probably avoid a lot of other crags which share parking with people doing other activities. There are a lot of routes to chose from so it is easy to spread out particularly if you explore the quarries.

 Graeme Hammond 06 Jun 2022
In reply to pancakeandchips:

> Not really sure why its taking the piss to want to stay there after 6 o'clock. There's a height barrier so no vans are getting in anyway.

I believe it is to stop problems of anti social behaviour, people smoking drugs in the car park etc. I can understand frustration if that is the agreed closure time with Yorkshire Water and people regularly ignore it. Personally I'd like to see it open later to but always park opposite their house on the road if intending to stay late (except the one time i got locked in). There are certainly much more restrictive obstacles to access on other crags but that isn't to say the situation couldn't be improved.

 PaulJepson 06 Jun 2022
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

I think the walkers etc. tend to use the carpark though, as they're not usually parking up in the morning and still planning on being there gone 6, like climbers do. I'd imagine most vehicles parked opposite the house while the carpark is open are climbers. 

6
 Graeme Hammond 06 Jun 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

> I think the walkers etc. tend to use the carpark though, as they're not usually parking up in the morning and still planning on being there gone 6, like climbers do. I'd imagine most vehicles parked opposite the house while the carpark is open are climbers. 

From nearly 15 years of climbing after work at Rivelin that is not my experience. I have regularly seen runners/dog walkers parked on the road. I expect climbers not the majority of users at this location.

On a couple of occasions I've even parked on the road rather than the carpark when not climbing in the evening when the carpark wasn't being locked regularly as my perception is that my car is more secure in front of their house and I wonder if others do the same or just follow the sign that says it is locked at 6pm!

 PaulJepson 06 Jun 2022
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

Fair enough, I've only been on a weekend. Different crowd would make sense on an evening during the week. 

2
In reply to Capricorn One:

Do you know what time they open it in the morning?

 gethin_allen 06 Jun 2022
In reply to pancakeandchips:

> Not really sure why its taking the piss to want to stay there after 6 o'clock. There's a height barrier so no vans are getting in anyway.


By piss taking I mean staying the night or causing trouble late in the evening.

But, if the owner of the carpark wants the gate locked then that's their decision and if people abuse their good will then they could always just shut the place up for good.

1
In reply to gethin_allen:

> By piss taking I mean staying the night or causing trouble late in the evening.

I mean, if my car got locked in after having an epic or something at the crag "piss taking" by staying the night would be the default option if they don't come to unlock.

2
 deacondeacon 06 Jun 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

> If it's full then you'd probably want to go somewhere else as the crag will be rammed. 

Lol, there's nearly 400 routes at Rivelin, not counting Wyming Brook and the other stuff round there. You'll need a lot more than a full carpark before the crag is rammed 😅

In reply to gethin_allen:

I don't know much about Yorkshire Water, but I do know a bit about Dwr Cymru having done some work for them. Part of their charter involves providing amenity value, so in their case at least it's not just out of the goodness of their hearts.

In reply to anyone:

It's some time since I last went to Rivelin, and I think I've only ever parked in the carpark across the damn. Are there any other sensible parking possibilities? Obviously the walk in is likely to be further. 

 deepsoup 06 Jun 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

> I think the walkers etc. tend to use the carpark though, as they're not usually parking up in the morning and still planning on being there gone 6, like climbers do.

In light summer evenings just about everyone who goes there after work is planning to stay after 6.  A very small minority are climbers and most people who park there aren't planning to cross the A57, Wymingbrook is a very popular area with local walkers, runners and dog walkers.

> I'd imagine most vehicles parked opposite the house while the carpark is open are climbers. 

While the car park is open it tends to be mostly vans etc that won't fit under the height barrier.  But now I guess it'll basically be everyone who's arriving in the afternoon and not absolutely certain they'll be back before 6pm.

 deepsoup 06 Jun 2022
In reply to TobyA:

I think the nearest alternative car park would be Rails Rd. '9CJP+JJR Sheffield' on the Google map.

 deepsoup 06 Jun 2022
In reply to Alkis:

> No tall vans that is.

I don't know what you consider to be a 'tall' van, but a VW Transporter, Vauxhaul Vivaro etc. wont fit. The barrier is below 2m.

In reply to deepsoup:

My T5 is about 1.9m and does fit, as I've parked it there before.

Post edited at 23:04
 Graeme Hammond 06 Jun 2022
In reply to ChrisBrooke:

> Do you know what time they open it in the morning?

8am apparently.

 deepsoup 06 Jun 2022
In reply to Alkis:

You must have lower profile tyres than me then.

Whatever the height though, it's bloody ridiculous that car park being locked up so soon before dusk.

 Jenny C 06 Jun 2022
In reply to pancakeandchips:

> ..... Part of their charter involves providing amenity value, so in their case at least it's not just out of the goodness of their hearts.

Yes you're right, however YW are notorious for aparantly going out of their way to restrict access. Offering a carpark that is closed in the evenings (when most people will be off work so wanting to visit) is typical of this kind of attitude.

It might be worth local access reps contacting the local outdoor swimming Facebook group SOUP who are in negotiations with YW for improved access.

1
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

Thanks Graeme. 

 Graeme Hammond 06 Jun 2022
In reply to TobyA:

> It's some time since I last went to Rivelin, and I think I've only ever parked in the carpark across the damn. Are there any other sensible parking possibilities? Obviously the walk in is likely to be further. 

The rails road parking listed above is the only proper parking nearby.

There is lane 400m or so towards Sheffield from the dam that has been well used for years as an alternative parking spot.

Manchester Rd
https://maps.app.goo.gl/8iivn8FeMqxmFSzT9

However a new Yorkshire Water Private Road no parking sign has recently been installed - checking back through Google Street View history it wasn't in place in May 2021 but was there in September 2021.

This location was more heavily used during lockdown and as the lockdown eases but when Yorkshire Water insisted on keeping its carpark shut so probably caused issues that were tolerated previously when there were only a few cars using this lane occasionally. This also lead to dangerous parking on the A57 where there are double white lines down the centre of the road during busy periods. I wonder if we will see repeats of this on warm summer evening when the area is particularly popular if the carpark is locked more frequently.

 Graeme Hammond 07 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

> Whatever the height though, it's bloody ridiculous that car park being locked up so soon before dusk.

Yorkshire Water have a pdf document titled "on-sight parking". In it several of thier carparks are listed as having opening hours. For example 

"Scammonden Wood Edge -Height barrier (car park open 09:00-18:00)"

For rivelin the entry is:

"Rivelin -Height barrier (car park locked by local agreement at night)"

Would be interesting to know the exact agreement as night to me is after dusk which at this time of year is not 6pm.

 john arran 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

> Yorkshire Water have a pdf document titled "on-sight parking". 

But surely a lot of people want to park there more than once. Is there also a document titled "redpoint parking"?

 Offwidth 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

"there are double white lines down the centre of the road during busy periods."

Oh the joys of sentence order

Too many climbers still don't realise it's a traffic offence to park on the roadside where there are double white centre lines. Bad advice on this subject even made it into the odd guidebook.

 GrahamD 07 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

> You must have lower profile tyres than me then.

> Whatever the height though, it's bloody ridiculous that car park being locked up so soon before dusk.

I guess we could all offer to pay more to keep a carpark attendant on their books until later in the evening. 

In reply to GrahamD:

...or they could just leave it open. The line above about "local agreement" makes it sound suspiciously like someone bought a house near a beauty spot and then got upset about riffraff coming to enjoy it.

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 deepsoup 07 Jun 2022
In reply to pancakeandchips:

Funnily enough I believe (though I may be wrong) that the locking/unlocking is done by the grumpy bloke in the huge house next door. Perhaps he's also the "local" in YW's "local agreement".

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 Moacs 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Jenny C:

> Yes you're right, however YW are notorious for aparantly going out of their way to restrict access. Offering a carpark that is closed in the evenings (when most people will be off work so wanting to visit) is typical of this kind of attitude.

> It might be worth local access reps contacting the local outdoor swimming Facebook group SOUP who are in negotiations with YW for improved access.

Which is amusing as there are "no swimming" signs on the reservoir!

1
 Jenny C 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Moacs:

Hence the need for negotiations to try and remmedy that.

1
 Graeme Hammond 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Moacs:

> Which is amusing as there are "no swimming" signs on the reservoir!

Yes according to the sign at the carpark there are byelaws that make it an offence to "Bathe, swim, wade, dive, paddle, ice-skate"

 PaulJepson 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

It's often the case that using these reservoirs for recreation is illegal and considered far too dangerous until some yacht club comes along to cross the waterboards hand with silver, and then the access is reserved exclusively for paying members. Beautiful valleys and occasionally villages were flooded on the empty promise that it would create a water-space to be 'enjoyed by all'. 

 Jenny C 07 Jun 2022
In reply to PaulJepson:

Exactly. Visitors to reservoirs in Scotland (and most of Europe) enjoy the option of unrestricted swimming, yet if you listen to the water authorities English ones are a deathtrap.

To paraphrase the BMC participation statement. Climbing, mountaineering and swimming are activities with a danger of personal injury or death. Participants in these activities should be aware of and accept these risks and be responsible for their own actions.

Open water swimming groups want factually correct information on the dangers, and education that will have a positive impact on water safety. Personally I have swum right through winter for my mental and physical well-being, yes there are risks but I've been in far more perilous situations climbing, scrambling and kayaking (never actually been in rivelin though).

 Graeme Hammond 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Jenny C:

> Open water swimming groups want factually correct information on the dangers, and education that will have a positive impact on water safety. Personally I have swum right through winter for my mental and physical well-being, yes there are risks but I've been in far more perilous situations climbing, scrambling and kayaking (never actually been in rivelin though).

Sounds reasonable and sensible rather than the current blanket ban. I imagen some locations would be dangerous but others would be safe. Correct information on those locations would be beneficial for safety whilst enhancing access and wellbeing for many other potential users.

In reply to Jenny C:

Indeed. My local lake was closed to swimming because of the 'pollution effects of body oil, suntan cream, etc.' In actual fact these effects are dwarfed into insignificance from the agricultural run off locally. As determined by actual scientists. Handily for the balance sheet the fishermen still get to use it.

 Cake 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Jenny C:

In the Sheffield area, a lot of the reservoirs are swum in, but they tend to be the more out-of-the-way ones, like Agden. I've never seen a sign saying that swimming is an offence, but they are surrounded by numerous signs warning of the immediate danger of death and nothing about where the actual peril lies. 

 Graeme Hammond 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Cake:

> In the Sheffield area, a lot of the reservoirs are swum in, but they tend to be the more out-of-the-way ones, like Agden. I've never seen a sign saying that swimming is an offence, but they are surrounded by numerous signs warning of the immediate danger of death and nothing about where the actual peril lies. 

Agden reservoir is owned by Yorkshire Water who have Bye laws that cover all their sites against swimming.  I can't imagen this information isn't included on some of the signs at Agden if only in small text as I expect this is a legal requirement. There is a link to the bye laws at the following page which also goes into in limited detail on the risks of swimming. 

https://www.yorkshirewater.com/things-to-do/visitor-safety/

 jdh90 07 Jun 2022
In reply to Cake:

At the highest level, the dangerous bit is all of the part that is wet, because it has a proven track record of hypothermia and drowning.  Or being slippy - a risk assessment favourite!  So one neat solution is to slap signs on labelling the whole thing as dangerous.  Saves the trouble of surveying then marking all your static hazards like shelves, exposed rebar, submerged machines, currents etc. Also saves finding a solution (maybe a flags system?) for dynamic risks like whether the spillway will overflow, algae blooms, temperature etc.  Bear in mind that some reservoirs were built hundreds of years ago, so some of the risks might be forgotten or "in there somewhere".

Its not only personal risk at play or else I'd be all for a participation statement.  The suncream thing makes me despair (hope its misreported) but I could see how stirring up sediment could have a real detriment to operating cost or drinking water quality.  At the far end of the scale, finding a corpse in your patch will probably tie up some resources for a bit, even more so if it drifted into something important.  Or a popped inflatable, windswept towel, discarded shorts, fire from bbq etc.  The thousands of people without water (or all the ones scurrying to avoid that) will be miffed, as will the billpayers.

The nuclear solution of blanket bans on reservoirs falls neatly within the current state of the legal system around land, owners and access.  Not saying its right or optimal, but its playing by the rules. 

It also caters to the pressure from bereaved families. After all, youre not "doing all you can" unless you're putting up a signs to say that nobody is allowed to play.  No, we meant warn of the aspects that's dangerous.  Yeah our risk assessment says that's all of it.

On some days I do think its total overkill, and would love to see some more progressive solutions like buoyed off bathing areas. On other days I think the public at large isnt very trustworthy with nice things so we should stick with the current system of determined, responsible folk trying their luck at getting away with it until its spoiled for them. 

If the alternative is a pile of drawn out committe meetings to polish wording and liability, I'd rather water bills were spent on fixing other problems.

But what about the sailors and anglers?  PASS. Maybe it is just the bright lights of a few fishing licences on top of the billions of water bill revenue (I'm doubtful), maybe they're fortunate to have some historic access rights or agreements.  I definitely dont buy that swimmers are more risk.

In the same way, maybe a guy that works 8-6 and does the carpark wants the overtime but can't get it approved because that activity would be viewed as an overhead rather than an investment. Meanwhile the locals aren't keen on druggies, doggers or any other group thats using the carpark after 6, so we go down the path of least resistance and nuke it.

There was a recent thread on no swimming signs at levers water.  They're an eyesore. But ultimately, someone has decided thats a measured response to deal with pressures they're facing, within the resources they've been given.  The owners of English water companies might be foreign interests, but the workers are normal local folk, and are likely just as dissatisfied with the outcomes in these conflicts as anyone.

The full story with all the nuances might be too long for anyone to bother reading or listening to.  But aren't the attempts at shortening it or trying to land it on one reason even more cringe?

Yes more education/explanation. But are people ready to sit though it and still not be allowed to swim or park their car?

1
 Cake 08 Jun 2022
In reply to Graeme Hammond:

I'm sure you're right, it will be in the small print on the signs somewhere. What stans it are the 'instant death' warnings everywhere.

Mrs Cake does not like breaking the rules, but I think she, like others, takes exception to these rules as it's clearly easy to mitigate the risks. 

 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to Cake:

Are they much different to warning signs around a quarry?  Would we automatically expect acess to put routes up?  What if it was an active site where the stone is still being extracted?

In reply to deepsoup:

> I think the nearest alternative car park would be Rails Rd. '9CJP+JJR Sheffield' on the Google map.

We used to use the car park at the top of Wyming Brook in the summer for a walk/climb/walk/pub (Three Merry Lads or The Sportsman) grand tour. I seem to remember that was about the same as the walk in from Rails road. Both are really nice walk ins.

I also remember walking to the edge from Woodbank Rd a few times when the field gates were open. During 26 years of living in Sheffield, the early closing of the Dams car park never once interfered with climbing at Rivelin.

 Cake 08 Jun 2022
In reply to jdh90:

Sorry if I look like I'm annoyed about these rules and signs. I'm not too fussed really. Given that I've never seen a YW member of staff near the reservoirs, I don't imagine they are going to start clamping down in a big way any time soon.

Also, cold water swimming isn't for me anyway.

 Jenny C 08 Jun 2022
In reply to Cake:

> .......Given that I've never seen a YW member of staff near the reservoirs, I don't imagine they are going to start clamping down in a big way any time soon.

You'd be surprised.

For the previous two years YW they have employed private security staff with dogs who were actively intimidating swimmers - one lady was told the dogs were to set on her if she didn't listen to them. Last week there was someone at Adgen (at 8.30am) with a megaphone shouting across the dam to get out of the water. 

As a climber do you feel that these would be rational ways to prevent access to a crag? Remember unlike climbing (where rocks can get knocked off onto others) the only person at direct risk from swimming is the swimmer themselves, and like responsible climbers most regular swimmers are well aware of the personal risks and how to mitigate them.

Post edited at 09:33
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 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to Cake:

No need to apologise, I'm playing Devils advocate.  Sorry if that came across as an attack, was really meant to provoke thought about attitudes and was replying to a few of the recent posts really, not just yourself.

Cold water swimming isn't my cup of tea either, but it is my partners.  I dont like seeing her upset that the local reservoirs are fenced off and signed.  We are fortunate enough to have alternative proper lakes a bit further away.

And its easy to sympathise, I've been at the receiving end of telling off for mountain biking on OA land without permission.

It was while festering over that incident, and also thinking about the levers water thread, that I drove past a quarry and saw the parallels.  I wouldn't bat an eyelid at seeing a danger - keep out sign.  Even if I felt like my I can manage the risks and my would have no impact, I would be ok with avoiding while access negotiations took place, especially so if it was active.  I find that pill harder to swallow for biking on grouse moors, so can understand why swimmers get frustrated about reservoirs.  Maybe thats just testament to how great the BMC reps are.

In a scooby doo mask-off that everyone saw coming, I'm a water company worker as well as an outdoorsy type.

The covering letter to my application had something along the lines of "I've grown up here and enjoy these spaces, I want to play a part in protecting it".

Too tedious to explain what I do do, but I've never erected a no swimming sign or taken part in a meeting to decide on acess.  I have had insight into what the staff in the field face by working closely with them.  When these threads start to read a bit one sided, I try to share some alternative points of view.

If people ask for reasons, I'll try to be thorough, which leads to walls of text. (Sorry) Compressing it to something with more impact might poorly communicate things.  Like the danger signs.

As a collective, we are awful in many ways and I feel the reflected shame from all the bad headlines despite me not feeling direct responsibility.  I make an effort to leave a positive impact where I can, so its demoralising when you feel tarred with the broad brush.  That applies to both my position as "water company" and a "public".

 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to Jenny C:

Theres a long post from me up there that touches on some of the other motivations besides personal risk.

In reply to Jenny C:

> As a climber do you feel that these would be rational ways to prevent access to a crag? Remember unlike climbing (where rocks can get knocked off onto others) the only person at direct risk from swimming is the swimmer themselves, and like responsible climbers most regular swimmers are well aware of the personal risks and how to mitigate them.

I certainly can't condone threatening people with dogs, but you have to remember a reservoir is effectively a workplace. The utility company has a legal obligation to protect the public from it's activities and associated hazards, the main hazard being the easily accessible wet drowny stuff. A member of the public 'accepting the risk' doesn't relieve them of that obligation.

Jdh90 has given a really good summation of the situation upthread. I started doing a bit of open water swimming with friends last year and think it's great, even in the winter. However I can see why the water companies would be reticent to allow swimming.

It should be possible to work something out regarding access (if you can go on in a boat with life jacket then why not as a group of swimmers with tow floats?).

I'm not a fan of 'slippery slope' arguments, but if someone decided after a few cans to swim in a reservoir and drowned (as they do) and that reservoir allowed swimming (regardless of agreed conditions), the first question from the lawyers would be "Why did you not simply prohibit all access?"

2
 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to Ridge:

> "Why did you not simply prohibit all access?"

You are quite right, but this would be asked in a whole bunch of scenarios, so I'm keen its not reduced back to personal injury again.

  • If the water or works was maliciously attacked.
  • If the production was disrupted accidentally.
  • If it becomes a burden in some other way, such as tidying up, or negotiating with the next group (boaters, windsurfers, scuba, anglers) who also want acess and being drawn into inter group conflicts.

All costs associated passed on to billpayers with profit margin applied.

Yes, water companies have some responsibility for the safety of its people and visitors.  And a responsibility to provide recreation.  But the priority will always be to keep the water production going as economically as possible, which could make it really hard to get them to budge.

Yorkshire Water might feel they've done their bit for swimmers by improving downstream water quality.  (Recent headlines on CSOs makes an excellent counterargument.)

I cant condone threatening people either, but if theres anything going for that reaction, its at least a targeted solution rather than a bigger, redder sign.  That would detract from the enjoyment of other visitors, who have no intention of getting in or on the water

If I was a YW billpayer, I'd be annoyed at funding people with dogs to threaten people. I'd be annoyed at both YW for going to that solution, and the public for driving them to escalate from signage.  Again, somebody has made a conscious decision that it is a measured response to pressures they are facing at work.  I dont think me and them are on the same ethical wavelength but thats where we are.

The leverage is currently on the side of the landowner, but we are given some channels to effect change.  We have MPs for laws we don't like and regulators such as Consumer Council for Water for specific industry complaints.

Or, a bottom up approach of trying to locate the people with immediate responsibility and appealing to them on a personal level.

Any good negotiation starts from trying to understand the suite of concerns from the other party, and testing which ones they're willing to compromise on.

The point I'm really trying to drive home is that there's rarely ever just one factor at play.

Same for the gate being shut earlier than we would like.

 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

> We used to use the car park at the top of Wyming Brook in the summer for a walk/climb/walk/pub (Three Merry Lads or The Sportsman) grand tour. I seem to remember that was about the same as the walk in from Rails road. Both are really nice walk ins.

Fine if you're happy for a significant portion of your evening to be walking.  (Albeit very pleasant walking.)  And fine generally if you're happy not using the closed car park, but if closing it early doesn't inconvenience anyone why not just close it altogether?

FWIW though I agree - the car park closing early isn't a problem for climbers predominantly.  Being sheltered, low lying and south-facing, Rivelin isn't really a summer venue anyway, it gets rather sweaty and horribly midgey as you know.  It's more a problem for everyone else who uses it - walkers, dog walkers, cyclists, bird watchers and people who just want to enjoy the area. 

If the nature reserve, and Wyming Brook itself in particular, were further inside the Peak District it'd be a proper honeytrap.  It's one of those badly kept semi-secrets how lovely that place is.  I wonder if Sheffield and Rotherham Wildlife Trust have been consulted about the car parks early closure.

For the benefit of those who don't know the place, the top car park is more secluded than the one down by the Rivelin dam and has no barrier at all.  Would I be correct in assuming that like me you have never found that car park inundated with 'druggies and doggers' (as one poster above colourfully imagines the problem might be)?  It kind of begs the question why the bottom car park needs a barrier at all.

In reply to deepsoup:

I still use that top car park to go running around the moors paths and up to High Neb. I always found the top Wyming Brook car park to be ok. Completely different to the activities which go on at the far end of Redmires road, where the Roman Road goes up to Stanage Pole which seems to sometime cater for the hot hatch/cash transactions and dogging crowd.

1
 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to jdh90:

> In the same way, maybe a guy that works 8-6 and does the carpark wants the overtime but can't get it approved because that activity would be viewed as an overhead rather than an investment.

If we assume you're correct and it's a single YW employee responsible for the locking & unlocking, you make an equally compelling argument for leaving it locked all weekend.  I mean you can't expect the poor chap to work 7 days a week can you? 

6pm is not late enough for someone to finish work at 5pm and nip over there for a shortish evening run or a walk, it makes a mockery of the car park even being there - why bother?

Obviously you can't provide a recreational public utility at the convenience of a member of staff who doesn't want to work outside office hours.  For blindingly obvious reasons that is precisely when most people have most of their leisure hours.  You may as well run a cafe that shuts for two hours in the middle of the day so the staff can enjoy a long lunch break.

However they currently do it, if YW find they lack the resources to lock the gate later in the evening, perhaps they should try talking to the Sheffield & Rotherham Wildlife Trust (who manage the nature reserve that more or less surrounds that car park and is the main attraction for most of its non-climbing visitors). 

They have a lot of volunteers who put time into maintaining the area, and I imagine they'd be happy to help out.  There's also an active 'friends of' organisation who put a lot of volunteer effort into maintaining paths etc., further down the Rivelin Valley downstream of the Rails Road car park (which, like the one up at the top of Wyming Brook, apparently has no need of any kind of barrier at all).

 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

> Would I be correct in assuming that like me you have never found that car park inundated with 'druggies and doggers' (as one poster above colourfully imagines the problem might be)? 

My words, but I feel I've been taken out of context. I wasn't trying to claim I knew the reason.  My point was there could be tension of factors which leads to YW actions.  The same post offered a suggestion that the opening hours might align with the keyholders shift and no desire from management to fund an extension of hours. All speculation.  The answer might be as easy as a new starter is following his instructions exactly rather than per tradition. Another made up example to illustrate a point.

>It kind of begs the question why the bottom car park needs a barrier at all.

Seems like great question to kick off a discussion.

 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to paul__in_sheffield:

>  hot hatch/cash transactions and dogging crowd.

Crikey.  I run around there a lot too and I've never seen that.  Lucky maybe.  The nearest thing to automotitve antisocial behaviour I've seen up that way is a few van-lifers taking up residence there and in the other Redmires car park for days at a time.  I always park at the bottom though. because it helps my motivation to have the joyous descent of Wyming Brook itself to look forward to at the end. 

I have sometimes got a bit annoyed when there was nowhere to park my van which (as it's everso slightly taller than Alkis's van or I'm just more cowardly) won't fit under the height barrier on the car park.  I guess from now on though, when the little bit of space outside the car park is full of cars that would easily fit inside I can't really blame them.

The Rivelin Dam car park has a few disabled spaces, I don't think any of the alternatives do.  I wonder if that's been given any thought.

 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to jdh90:

> My point was there could be tension of factors which leads to YW actions.

For sure, I got that you were speaking speculatively/hypothetically - but whatever the causes behind them, YW's actions are to render the car park useless to most of the people who would like to use it in the summer evenings. 

Even those who can get there early enough that they'll probably be ready to leave by 6pm (3 1/2 hours before sunset currently) won't want to risk it.

Likewise the hypothetical new starter following instructions precisely - it's besides the point, the question would more properly be why are the instructions to close it so early?  Either YW are interested in providing the facility or they're not.  Or perhaps they're more interested in maintaining the appearence of providing the facility while not actually doing so.

If it's a question of staff resources, as I mentioned above I'm pretty sure there's an untapped source of willing volunteers available.  Or, particularly as a YW bill payer, I'd be more than happy for them to take the money they're currently paying someone to shout at swimmers over Bradfield way through a loud hailer and do something useful with it instead.

Post edited at 16:11
 Jenny C 08 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

Be careful what you wish for.

Just seen that YW are looking to install pay and display meters as some of their other reservoir carparks "to help fund a ranger team to complete maintenance and tackle antisocial behaviour".

 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to Jenny C:

Perhaps they should clarify whether a few ladies of a certain age shucking off their Dryrobes and having a quick dip is one of the things they consider to be antisocial behaviour.

(I think the discussion of swimming in reservoirs is OT in this thread though - probably deserves a thread of its own.  Funnily enough the lower Rivelin reservoir is just about the only one I've never seen anyone swimming in.)

FWIW, I don't think a pay and display machine at Langsett Barn would be outrageous, no more so than Severn Trent's machines at Fairholmes and Heatherdene anyway.  There is at least a toilet block there that needs looking after.

 Jenny C 08 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

> (I think the discussion of swimming in reservoirs is OT in this thread though - probably deserves a thread of its own.  Funnily enough the lower Rivelin reservoir is just about the only one I've never seen anyone swimming in.)

Agreed, I only brought it up as it's another community frustrated by the notoriously grumpy gate warden at Rivelin - so a joint approach from both communities could be in everyone's favour.

 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

Yeah, whatever the reason, sounds crap.

Before I moved role and house, my local crag was on land my employer owns.  The staff that did frequent the site just laughed off the "evening activities".  AFAIK, the free car park was only shut off when there was some work on and it was needed to stage equipment.

They may be interested in providing the leisure activities, but do so around their core business of providing water and this is how they have decided it will look at this site.

YW might be happy to allocate the resources that way, if only they didn't have the more pressing issues of pesky swimmers that need loudhailing...

Although, I imagine they might have a few other projects they'd rather prioritise spare budget to.

Have you tried offering any of this feedback to them?

1
 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to jdh90:

> Have you tried offering any of this feedback to them?

I haven't, but you're quite right to suggest that I should.  I'm supposed to be doing other things than messing about on UKC right now, but will try to get round to firing them an email later on.

 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to jdh90:

That wasn't meant to sound so confrontational sorry, just reread it and didn't like my own tone.

At our joint customer complaints seem to get passed down to the relevant managers pretty quickly and with a bit of noise directed at them rather than into the ether, things might change.  In the thread you're even offering solutions.

 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to jdh90:

> That wasn't meant to sound so confrontational sorry

No worries, it didn't come across that way at all.

 deepsoup 08 Jun 2022
In reply to jdh90:

Hm..  no relevant contact details or an email address on the website, and the contact form thingy has drop-down boxes to select a topic none of which are relevant.  You can't send a message without picking something though, so I've ended up submitting my comments as an 'account enquiry' with the first line as "This is not an account enquiry!" followed by a polite request to forward it to the relevant department/person.  If I get a reply that's in any way enlightening while this thread is still open I'll quote it here..

 jdh90 08 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

Well done, annoying that its so convoluted.

I imagine its good to get it by official channels, as its the best hope of triggering it against a customer satisfaction performance metric.  Repeated contact, or multiple customers contacting on the same subject would only improve chances of it being escalated (assuming they work the same as our place).

The other official route might be Consumer Council for Water, to get regulatory weight to it. Of the choice of regulators, that one might be best for this subject.  They have "make a complaint" on their splash page, haven't looked beyond that.

Alternatively, social media pages might handle a DM.

Or trying to get the email of someone relevant.  With so many employees in the area, you might only be a degree or two of separation away.  If youre feeling sleuthy, linkedin search of role titles might get you partway there if you don't have a contact to kick it off.  I imagine you're after someone in whatever YW call their catchment or treatment water operations, as the car park duties are probably tacked onto the daily management of either a chunk of reservoir drainage land, or the associated treatment works.

Good luck!

 muppetfilter 09 Jun 2022
In reply to deepsoup:

I've  live in Lodge Moor for years and regularly ride down Fox Hagg,  the locking of the gates was done done to discourage the McDonalds takeaway and Skunk smoking Crowd who were infuriating the neighbour down there who had been complaining to Yorkshire Water about nefarious nocturnal activities. 

Rails Road isn't a Yorkshire water owned site , Its Council Owned so that explains why YW hasn't put a gate up and consequently which is why it's frequently full of Flycampers, Litter , Chavs and Doggers (quite a diverse social venn diagram)

2
 Jenny C 09 Jun 2022
In reply to muppetfilter:

I use rails road a lot and wouldn't say the fly tiping is any worse than you get in most places. You do get a few overnight campers, but I guess the fact it's a reasonable distance (and out of sight) from houses means nighttime activities don't create a nuisance. Arguably overnight camping will discourage the flytippers - almost like having a warden living on-site.

 muppetfilter 09 Jun 2022
In reply to Jenny C:

I was meaning the overnight free campers not flytipping , the litter tends to be of the Hillsboro Barracks  McDonalds wrappers out the window type.

 deepsoup 27 Jun 2022
In reply to thread:

An update..  a day or two after I submitted my "account enquiry" via the website, I had a reply saying that my message had been passed on elsewhere and I'd get a more relevant reply in due course.

That arrived, from a member of the 'Customer Recovery Team' and it's quite interesting.
(For context to the last bit - I mentioned in my original message that the Rivelin Car park has a disabled space which neither Rails Rd nor Wymingbrook does, so it's potentially the only parking provision in the area for a person with mobility issues to enjoy the nature reserve.)

Here's the meat of their reply to me:

> Thank you for contacting us regarding Rivelin reservoir car park.

> I've received some information from our land and property team,

> The carpark is closed at 6pm, the signage to outline this has been up for over a year. Cars in the carpark can still exit without any issues after 6pm, this only stops vehicles entering the car park after 6.

> The car park is locked to prevent antisocial behaviour at this secluded private car park. As the car park doesn't seem to have any antisocial behaviour issues this shows the measures are working as we have suffered with this in the past.

> The other car parks referred to are not owned by Yorkshire Water as stated on our website. I would advise speaking to the landowners of these car parks regarding disabled parking.

I've replied to ask for clarification on how you're supposed to go about leaving after 6pm, and whether it's simply a question of calling the 'emergency' phone number on the signs and asking to be let out.  (And that I still think it's a bit of a shame if people can't arrive before six, but that it's great news that you can actually leave after six and that addresses my concerns very well.)

If the "very unhappy keyholder" that the OP mentions is, as this would seem to suggest, actually obliged to let people out on request that's cool.  As far as I'm concerned, short of becoming abusive, he's perfectly welcome to be as grumpy about it as he likes!

Following my earlier post a UKC user emailed me another address for someone that I might try getting in touch with more directly, but I haven't got around to that yet.  (May not actually bother if it turns out that it's officially YW's policy that you can leave later in the evening despite the gate being locked - that'd be a pretty good result imo.)

Post edited at 14:32
In reply to deepsoup:

I got an 18 month old Vivaro and that goes under.  When I drive up I always think theres no way it will get through but its fine. 

Post edited at 14:34
 deepsoup 27 Jun 2022
In reply to Kipper-Phil Smith:

Fair enough then, perhaps I chickened out too soon when I tried it.

You seem to have missed out a number to say how many meters high the barrier is - I think it's about 1.9m ish (definitely less than 2m), next time I'm there I'll try to remember to measure the exact height of the barrier in case that info is useful to anybody.  The car park has been resurfaced not so long ago, so it may have even changed slightly.


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