This film is part of Free


A documentary on Burrator reservoir in the Dartmoor National Park

Non-Fiction 1960 29 mins

From the collection of:

Logo for South West Film and Television Archive


Burrator is narrated by David Rodgers and was produced and directed by Michael McCloy. It takes us through the recent history of the Burrator manmade reservoir located at the southern end of Dartmoor National Park. The documentary includes the Fishing Feast Ceremony where Sir Francis Drake is honoured for giving Plymouth a reliable water supply in the 16th century.

The last tenant of Longstone Manor, George Shillibeer is given notice and the reservoir built under the supervision of Plymouth’s Water Engineer, Edward Sandeman and completed in 1898. The landscape is styled on a Swiss lake. The reservoir has two dams, the 1893 Burrator Dam across the River Meavy at Burrator Gorge and the 1894 Sheepstor Dam on the dividing ridge between Meavy and Sheepstor Brook. The reservoir can hold up to 1026 million gallons of water.