Flood Mitigation Device.

I am often amused on Louisa’s Walk, by men’s reactions to the story.  Many come because their wives/partners want them to.  Many don’t – they go on the Cascade Brewery tour and then hear back from their partners how fantastic Louisa’s Walk is and wish they had come!  If you trawl through some of our many TripAdvisor reviews you will often read that “my partner didn’t really want to come  –  he doesn’t really like ‘culture’ – but he loved it!”.

There is something for everyone on Louisa’s Walk, fun and light heartedness, a bit of exercise, fantastic storytelling of course, pathos, sadness and plenty of photo opportunities!  It’s theatre, it’s educational it’s entertaining, it’s history come alive.  But given the Strolling Theatre nature of Louisa’s Walk there is also an element of whatever the environment throws up.   In my last post I talked about the bumble bees and the black rabbits – we saw the ducklings again yesterday.

However, something that is there all the time and often really engages the men, is the flood mitigation device at the bottom of the Cascade Gardens.  On the way down we are very much engaged in Louisa’s story and this bridge, over the device, becomes the prison hulk The Warrior – it  is not the time to explain the structure.  But on the way back when Louisa’s Walk morphs into a semi tour rather than a play and questions are often answered, there is time to explain it.  Basically it is the place where the Hobart Rivulet (the reason for the siting of Hobart by David Collins in 1804) is contained as it comes down off Mount Wellington.  The structure catches and traps the boulders and branches that would otherwise threaten to dam the rivulet further downstream and flood the Cascades Female Factory and indeed Hobart.

In the Crime Yard on Louisa’s Walk, Louisa explains that it is the lowest part of the Female Factory and that when  the Hobart Rivulet floods in winter and in spring then so does the Crime Yard and the women were often wading around in icy, cold, freezing water.  That wouldn’t happen these days because the flood mitigation device is very effective.

If you visit the bottom end of Collins Street in Hobart nearest the River Derwent, you can see some images, mounted on plaques, of the area known as Wapping, under water, early on in the 20th century.  The flood device built sometime in the middle of the 20th century, saved the town from such disasters.

At the Bottom of the Cascade Gardens

Saving Hobart from Flooding

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