NS3574 : Measured Mile post in the Clyde at Parklea

taken 3 years ago, 3 km from Port Glasgow, Inverclyde, Great Britain

Measured Mile post in the Clyde at Parklea
Measured Mile post in the Clyde at Parklea
The landward of the westernmost pair of posts is broken and lies on the shore. This photo shows the metal triangle at the top of that post.
Parklea Measured Mile

Three pairs of metal posts can be seen in or near the old timber ponds Link in the River Clyde at Parklea in the east end of Port Glasgow.

Each pair consists of a landward post just above or below the high tide line and a second post due approximately north, around 90m away out on the mudflats. Each post was originally held in place by three guy lines, but these are now gone and only the anchors remain. The posts are around 6m high.

In the late 1960s the posts were painted bright yellow and the guy lines were present, but severed at the ground end, making the posts appear like maypoles as children (including the author) used to swing on the guy lines. No yellow paint remains today and the posts are well rusted. In January 2017, the landward post of the westernmost pair was found to be broken and lies on the shore where it fell.

Each of the outer posts has a triangular metal shape near its top, with the triangle pointing upwards. Each of the landward posts has a similar triangle, but located at the top of the post and pointing downwards.

This suggests that the posts were used as a "measured mile" or, more accurately, a measured kilometre since the two furthest pairs of posts are around 1Km apart. I have read elsewhere LinkExternal link that Denny shipbuilders of Dumbarton established a measured mile here in 1961 for testing their D1 hovercraft, these posts are almost certainly the remains of that "mile".

The westernmost pair can be found at the east end of the old sea wall, around 400m upstream from Parklea football stadium car park.

The middle pair are on the point just upstream from the last of the many football pitches at Parklea. The landward post of this pair is above the high tide line, almost hidden amongst the bramble bushes to the right of the footpath.

The easternmost pair are immediately west of the Finlaystone Burn.

Traditional measured nautical miles, such as the one further downstream at Skelmorlie Link , employ pairs of posts like those at Parklea. Each post has a V or inverted V shaped marker on it which forms an X with its partner post when they are exactly aligned and viewed from the sea.

Sturdy waterproof footwear is required if you plan to visit the Parklea posts. Plan your visit to coincide with low tide, otherwise the posts will be surrounded by water (but not submerged). It is possible to access the posts from the Langbank side, but this entails a longer walk and cannot be done at high tide. The Finlaystone burn has no bridge and needs to be forded, which is also best done at low tide.

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NS3574, 72 images   (more nearby search)
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Date Taken
Monday, 2 January, 2017   (more nearby)
Sunday, 15 January, 2017
Geographical Context
Historic sites and artefacts  Estuary, Marine 
Primary Subject of Photo
Navigation Marker 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NS 3582 7414 [10m precision]
WGS84: 55:55.9324N 4:37.7814W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! NS 3582 7414
View Direction
EAST (about 90 degrees)
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