TUNNEL BEND STREAM DIVERSION TUNNEL

Location

TUNNEL BEND TRACK KEVINGTON, MANSFIELD SHIRE

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Heritage Inventory (HI) Number

H8123-0023

 

Heritage Inventory Description

The Tunnel Bend diversion tunnel is dry during periods of low river flow, and appears quite safe to walk through. The south-east end features an open-cut channel about 15-20 m in depth. (Steenhuis p.46). The tunnel is approximately 3 metres wide and 2 metres high and 200 metres long through stable rock.

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Heritage Inventory Significance: -

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Recorded By: Jeremy Smith & Ray Supple Date recorded: 1999

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History

Contextual History:History of Place:
Heritage Inventory History of Site:
The tunnel that gives this bend in the Goulburn River its name was constructed by the Goulburn Valley Sluicing Co. in 1866 to divert the river flow and enable the working of the bed: " a party has been formed for working the bed of the River Goulburn below Gaffney's Creek. The bed of this river has long been known as highly auriferous, but up to the present time has only been partially worked by means of 'wing dams' from its banks (Chinamen being the principal adventurers hitherto); but this party purpose diverting the stream from its course for a distance of about a mile in length, a highly favourable bend of the river has been secured, across the isthmus of which the current will be carried by means of an open channel, terminated by a short tunnel."
In mid-1867 the company had fourteen men employed sawing timber for boxes, building a dam for raising water into a head ditch for sluicing purposes. They had stripped two large paddocks, but were unable to bottom without the aid of a Californian wheel and pumps, which were expected to be in action shortly. A couple of months later, heavy floods carried away their dam and 'injured' the company's works to the tune of £700 or £800. They planned to rebuild and resume operations when the flooding subsided, but there is no evidence that this happened.
References:Mining Surveyors' Reports (Gaffney's Creek Subdivision), September 1866, June & September 1867
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