Bruce Comfort
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I'm a retired engineer. I ride a 400cc Suzuki Burgman motorscooter and I live in Oamaru, South Island of New Zealand. I have two adult daughters. My interests (if you haven't worked it out) include New Zealand's heritage of engineering works, snapshot photography of the built environment and recording pastoral farming activities around here. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- PLEASE NOTE THAT MANY PHOTOGRAPHS ON THIS PANORAMIO SITE HAVE BEEN TAKEN BY ACCESSING HERITAGE BUILDINGS, STRUCTURES, AND ENGINEERING ARTIFACTS WHICH LIE ON PRIVATE LAND. PUBLICATION OF PHOTOGRAPHS ON THIS SITE DOES NOT IMPLY ANY PUBLIC RIGHTS OF ACCESS. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- PLEASE ALSO NOTE THAT A FEW PHOTOS ON THIS SITE ARE NOT MINE, AND THAT MANY ARE TAKEN INDOORS AND ARE OF MACHINERY AND THAT THIS APPARENTLY CONTRADICTS THE TERMS OF USE OF THE PANORAMIO WEBSITE. I HAVE HAD THE SITE MODERATORS' APPROVAL FOR USING THE SITE THIS WAY AS ALL SUCH PHOTOS LINK IN SOME FASHION TO MY OWN PHOTOGRAPHS OF PLACES IN NEW ZEALAND WHERE ARTIFACTS OF ENGINEERING OR PASTORAL OR INDUSTRIAL HERITAGE CAN STILL BE FOUND. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- MY INTENTION IS NOT TO USURP THE RIGHTS OF THE HISTORIC PHOTOGRAPHERS NOR OF COPYRIGHT OWNERS, AND CREDIT IS GIVEN WHERE I CAN. I have made an endeavour to contact copyright holders of material published on these pages and where appropriate, permission is still being sought for these items. Where replies were not received, or where the copyright owner has not been able to be traced, or where the permission is still being sought, I have decided, in good faith, to proceed with publication. I would be happy to hear from copyright owners at any time to discuss usage of item. IF YOU GO TO THE PLACES WHERE MY OWN PHOTOGRAPHS HAVE BEEN ACCEPTED BY THE MODERATORS TO BE IN THE PHOTOS LAYER ON GOOGLE EARTH, MY HOPE IS THAT THE OTHER HISTORIC PHOTOGRAPHS (which will not have been accepted by the moderators of Google Earth but which appear on these pages) WILL STIMULATE YOU TO THINK ABOUT THE ENGINEERS, ENTREPRENEURS, INVESTORS, THE WORKERS AND OPERATORS AND ALL THE PEOPLE, NOW GONE, WHOSE LIVES WERE INEXTRICABLY TIED TO THESE PLACES AND THESE ENDEAVOURS. ---------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------- MY E-MAIL ADDRESS IS AND I WELCOME INPUT INTO THIS WORK -----------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

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The mouth of Riddler's kiln. The tensioning bands are visible and the fact that erosion and slumping has caused the two retaining walls below to disappear means that there is no flat land around the top of the kiln. In its working life this would not have been how it looked and an extensive area of flat would have been available all around for the operators (Lime Burners)to have walked around the top and tipped in the loads of stone and wood which the kiln used on a continuous basis when it was being fired. Worked in this mode, the kiln will have been classed as a Draw Kiln There was a steel lid apparently (it has corroded and fallen down into the furnace) and this shows that at least on some occasions the kiln worked in batch-wise mode as a Clamp Kiln.




This is the Langdon kiln, operated until about 1911

This photo, copied and enhanced a bit here, is at the Staveley Geological and Historical Museum, which has a very good display of local industry and the community surrounding the area which was associated with and to some extent depended on commercial mineral deposits. The wooden trestle bridge has a group of visitors and workmen and a small trolley is visible. This tramway bridge lead to the coal mine which was about 300 metres away. To the left of the photo is just visible a similar but shorter bridge with rails also, along which the stone was brought.

The timber corral at the top of the kiln made good sense as workmen up there were otherwise exposed to a fall.

This is one of possibly only two "freestanding" kilns of this type in New Zealand, the other being McDonald's kiln on Otago Peninsula.

The burnt lime had to be hauled up the slope at the bottom right of the photos where a roadway was being built when this photo was taken.

How the operators of the Phoenix Mill would have loved this!

In this and the previous photo, the trace of the two water races feeding the Phoenix Mill can be seen. At the top right where the small white (pump) shed appears is the breast of the earth dam that impounded this branch of Oamaru Creek. The dam is now non functional and has been breached but it is visible in Google Earth about 300 metres upstream of this shot.

The second race was put in when the new wheel was installed but the overarching problem with the mill was the ephemeral nature of the creek. In the late 19th and early 20th Centuries, North Otago had a dry climate (that seems to have changed) and droughts were common and devastating. The mill struggled to process grain of course at the time (mainly)at harvest which was the driest part of the year. Successive owners persevered but the mill eventually closed in deference to steam powered mills in Oamaru township. As far as I'm aware there was never a water powered mill in town (water powered as in utilising the 1880 public water supply - See The Borough Race photosets)

This is a very old quarry site and its size indicates that. The Silica gravels have their origin in a fresh water lake and river system of which there is now no geological record - the source being so far back in time that New Zealand has changed its shape and profile from the inexorable grindings of the Pacific and Indo-Australian plates which we straddle.

This pic is included in the Pastoral and Cropping tag series because the gravels are comprised of nice rounded smooth stones and sands and they find extensive use for roading material and are particularly valuable for the "cow lanes" - the internal roading systems built by intensive dairy farms in the area for moving their stock around the farms between various paddocks and to and from the milking sheds. Although these lanes take up a substantial area of otherwise valuable grass-growing land, they are economic in the longer term by enabling cattle to get around without tracking mud and destroying pasture and the rounded stones are easy on the animals' hooves. There have been numerous smallish coal mines in the locality too, not great coal but it has been of value to the development of North Otago for some 100 years. No coal is currently mined, however Holcim (a Swiss cement manufacturing company) has all the consents it needs to build a million ton per year dry process cement factory here and they have coal reserves of 50 year extraction fully mapped.

Fields of Sunflowers appear around North Otago every year - each year different places are planted to reduce the risk of soil borne disease. Whenever paddocks near the main highways are selected, tourist vehicles in their dozens stop to take photos like this (or better)

No-one stops to take photos after the flower heads have matured and the seeds are ripe, because then they spray the plants with defoliant to make harvesting easy. I call them the killing fields.

All the seed (and were talking thousands of tons annually) is grown by and utilised by TopFlight Seeds

And it all goes into commercial budgie and bird seed mixes for pet birds. Before you crack up laughing, consider that the company is a large and respected one that has a long history in North Otago and which employs a lot of capital and many employees and owns huge tracts of land for their operation.

Half way between the south Pole and the Equator - well if that's correct what is this all about then? Do you know why the two different distances??

I know - it's now up to you to work out the apparent inconsistency.

I thought Id never see that angle of hughes again.My girlfriend was there for 2 years in 77/78 torrance was not as hard to drive to as it is now.People tell me dont even bother coming to visit cuz of traffic

Peter you are not a Panoramio uploader, but you seem to be a comprehensive looker. What do you think of my use of the website to publish??



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