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So Much Rain and so Little Water

While we experience a deluge of water this afternoon, I am reading through our archives and I am learning about the huge amount of manpower and fuel that was needed to get water from the Mundaring Weir to the next pumping station and beyond.

No. 2 Pumping Station

O’Connor was the name of the No. 2 pumping station and water was pumped through pipes from a reservoir known as Mundaring Weir. 25,200 kilolitres of water per day were pumped from this pumping station to No. 3 pumping station at Cunderdin, 135 kilometres away. O’Connor became the official name for No. 2 pumping station in 1927. This required over 3,000 tons of wood per year cut from the surrounding forest by piece work cutters. This was then carted by horse-drawn drays and wagons by contractors before they were replaced by motor trucks. Wood was stacked alongside the tramlines waiting to be fed into the boilers. Although it is many years since the pumps last operated, bark and charcoal can still be seen on the site.

Stacks of Firewood with Horse and Cart

On the hillside overlooking the pumphouse was a row of cottages housing families of staff, engine drivers and firemen. Although all the buildings are long gone, the flowers that grew in the cottage gardens still provide a colourful spectacle in Spring for several hundred metres along the trail.

Originally there were 8 steam powered pumping stations along the line. Gradually they were replaced by electric powered pumps and in 1954 No. 2 pumping station was closed.

Some years later when firewood was moved by motor vehicles.


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