I had been informed that, somewhere in Basingstoke, was a Victorian pump house, and my interest was piqued. I located it on the map and, about a week ago, set off to see what it was like on the ground. It was inside a gated compound, part of the active waterworks run by South East Water. The gate was open… I parked my car outside and walked in, with the purpose of finding someone and requesting permission to draw.
A gentleman in a hi-vis vest emerged from the building and I attracted his attention. He told me that he did not have the authority to grant my request, but that he would ask his boss.
South East Water were very accommodating and I went back to the compound today – the last dry day of the week, if the forecast is accurate – where I was met by a member of staff who was both courteous and interested in what I was doing, although quite happy to leave me to it.
I made several sketches, three of which are illustrated below: