It was widely assumed that Colonel Hawkesworth drained the mere and breached the Tiltyard dam to render the former royalist stronghold indefensible. However an article on page 32 in Kenilworth History 2015:
“The question has often been asked when the breach in the dam was made? This is not known. Hawkesworth may have just opened the sluice under the dam on a permanent basis. Then a hundred years of floods weakened the masonry and caused cavitation around the barrel vault which finally collapsed – before 1821”.
In the 1964 picture we can see the concrete pipes have been laid to culvert Finham Brook so that the breach can be filled in at last.
Many thanks to David Brock for his assistance in putting the accompanying text together. His work on this subject is too extensive to summarise here, but readers can find further contributions by David in the society’s annual Kenilworth History publication, such as his article “Development of the Fourth Side of the Castle” in KH2015.