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Document 35, P 26

flood of December one thousand seven hundred and seventy eight were now
wrecked full and covered with Gravel and reduced to the Level of the adjacent
parts another flood succeeded this in the Compass of ten days that rose within
eight Inches as high as the former but in this nothing happened of any kind
in short the Bridge being now Erected as far as it was concerned with the water
all the Arches cleared and the Defences completed after a great Number of great
Floods and nothing happening in Consequence everyone seemed so entirely
satisfied of the Stability of the Bridge that even the Gilligate people* Mr
Pickernel observed ceased their visits who before had constantly after every
Flood come to Inspect in hopes of finding something Correspondent to their
prayers and wishes for the downfall of the Bridge.
Mr Smeaton was however agreeably surprized on having this Account
that the fall of water had been so great and no harm ensued for had it been
possible for him to be appriz’d of such a fall beforehand he never
should have recommended to Mr Errington to have undertaken to have Erected
a Bridge upon that Bed of Gravel.
It therefore at this time apears plain that the Oakwood Bank Rubble will
lay still and resist a Velocity of the water of Nine hundred and thirty feet in a
Minute yet is capable of being all removed and carried away by a Velocity of
water of or a little exceeding one thousand feet Per Minute a Velocity resulting
from a difference of Four. Four as it was or upwards in the Flood of March
One thousand Seven hundred and Eight two And that the Gravel Bed itself
is capable of being torn up under a much less degree of Velocity the Question then
is how in such a situation a foundation can be laid and effectually Secured
Shall we attempt to build a Wall across the bottom of the River accord-
-ing to Mr Wooler’s proposition Experience has shewn in the Building of the
last Bridge that the Gravel is of so open a nature in the Main Channel of
the River that it is impracticable to drain of the water Mr Smeaton means
not to put limits to the invention and ingenuity of Men but his observa-
-tion Experience nor invention has hitherto suggested any effectual Method
of founding such a Wall without draining of the Water and the same
will apply itself to the [persuing?]* the bottom across the River.
But for a moment suppose the thing done, this Wall or this Apron
26 must

Note: Mr Smeaton's Memorial P 26

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Transcribed by CTW and KS