Today’s Modern cloth companies would probably not have come to pass if it were not for this little known area of Huddersfield. As the cloth industryand town itself developed it became necessary to provide a more adequate water supply and in 1743, it was decreed that the first waterworks for the town should be developed and a suitable location should be sort.
The River Colne offered an accessible and copious supply and on the left bank of the river at Folly Hall a pumping engine, worked by a waterwheel, was installed, hence the name of Engine Bridge.
From here the water was conveyed in wooden pipes to a storage reservoir. From this reservoir water was distributed for domestic and trade purposes.
These waterworks not only supplied the needs of the day, but contributed further to the fast and dominating development of the local textile industry. There was an increase in the number of mills along the river banks, making use of the water-power and at the same time a tendency of the people to move to the lower parts of the valley to be nearer their work.
The abundant supply of water, coupled with the rich adjacent coal provisions provided ample resources for use in driving the early machines used in the production of cloth and also provided for the fulling and dyeing processes.