Blue Lagoon

It definitely had a blue tinge about it, a result of the mineral washing out of the alum shales. Blue Lagoon or Blue lake is a late-19th-century reservoir built to provide a head of water to hydraulic hoist and water turbines at Home Farm.

It was built by Sir Joseph Whitwell Pease, the industrialist and later politician, for his latest mechanisation schemes. The dam actually supplied water until the 1950s.

The water was remarkably calm and clear this morning, sheltered from the hooley blowing on the high moors.

I have already posted about the Blue Lake before, here and here , but in seeking something else to write, I came across the “Portsmouth Affair” in which Joseph Whitwell Pease, a Quaker, became entangled in at the turn of the century and in which he had his honour and integrity impugned in the High Court1‘THE ESTATE OF THE LATE MR. E. PEASE’ (1900) Leeds Mercury, 12 Dec, available: [accessed 05 Feb 2022]..

It involved Pease’s niece, Beatrice, whom Sir Joseph had accepted as his ward on the death of his brother and Beatrice’s father Edward when she was 12 or 13 years old.

Now it’s getting late so I won’t say too much for now, but Beatrice ended up marrying the Earl of Portsmouth and under her father’s she had been left a considerable fortune under a trust comprising members of the Pease family, one of whom was Sir Joseph.

Basically as I see it on first reading, the trust would have proved an income to Beatrice but this turned out not to be as great as expected, and so the trustees offered to buy her interest in Edward’s estate. Although this agreement had been sanctioned by an earlier court, Beatrice took the Trustees to court to set it aside. Although Beatrice did not specifically allege a breach of trust, “some of the letters did suggest the possibility of some claims of that footing“.

Beatrice won her case and Sir Joseph’s reputation was severely wounded.

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    ‘THE ESTATE OF THE LATE MR. E. PEASE’ (1900) Leeds Mercury, 12 Dec, available: [accessed 05 Feb 2022].

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