Bushmills - Irish Pictures (1888)

From Irish Pictures Drawn with Pen and Pencil(1888) by Richard Lovett

Chapter X: The Giant's Causeway and the Mourne Mountains … continued

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Two or three miles further the line strikes inland, and Bushmills, the headquarters of the tramway company, is reached. All who are interested in the practical working of the line should stop here long enough to inspect the building where the electricity is generated. That it is generated may be proved, not only by the demonstration of being carried there in a car supplied with no other motive force, but by taking slight shocks from the rail.

Bushmills is a neat little place, noted, like Coleraine, for distilling, and also for salmon fishing. The River Bush runs past it into the ocean, and about a mile above the town rushes impetuously on its way through a beautiful little glen, thus forming a salmon leap. The old mills stood here, but they were removed to make room for the apparatus by which the electricity is generated. The water from the upper reaches of the river is brought to the building by a race, and a head of twenty-six feet of water is obtained. By this means driving force which can be worked up to a hundred horse-power is obtained, and by an ingenious mechanical arrangement it is imparted to the powerful dynamos in the building. The supply can be easily regulated, and the testing instruments are all very interesting. The very pretty surroundings enhance the pleasure of a visit.

From Bushmills a short run takes the car to the terminus, which is only a stone's throw from the Causeway Hotel. Since the opening of the tramway, this has been greatly improved. The writer recalls a visit some years ago, when after a long day's drive, the latter part through mist and rain, he arrived damp and weary, and found the appearance of hotel and rooms extremely depressing, and the lack of creature comforts very considerable. He recently spent a night there, and although it rained a deluge and blew a hurricane, the snugness was all that could be desired. The whole place has been refurnished, new reception rooms added, and the cheerful electric light, supplied from Bushmills, now adds greatly to the comfort of the visitor.

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