How to Open The Electronic Gates Manually


Here are instructions for opening the electronic gates at Burrium Gate, useful in the event of a power failure.

Opening the Gates in an Emergency

How to Open the Electric Gates Manually

The problem: The electric motor operating the gates is not working.  Perhaps there is a power cut, or it could be very cold weather.  As a result we would not be able to get our cars out of Burrium Gate.

Opening the Electric Gates ManuallyHow to open the electronic gates

Firstly, you have to believe it's possible to open the automatic entrances at Burrium Gate with an Allen key.

Start by locating the communal Allen key, it's probably in a whitish, utility-looking box at the pond side of the gates.  Gotcha, you need a triangular key to get into the box containing the Allen key!

Note: The North and South gates each have a different Allen key, so one size won't fit all electronic gates.

Once you have the metal rod with a square end in your hand, it's a matter of sequencing; one gate opens before the other.  You can check the logic by examining the overlap at the centre.  Locate the female slot for the Allen key at the very bottom of each gate, near its hinge.  As to whether it turns clockwise or anti-clockwise, you have to experiment - gently.  Again, the belief that you can do it is more important than detailed instruction.

If you have the foresight to bring, a rope, or a cloth to tie-back each gate - take a gold star!  Failure to take this precaution means that the metal bars will flap back and damage your car.  Remember at this stage you have placed the gate in its emergency state, there is no electricity, hence no electro-mechanical over-ride to protect the cars as they pass through, for this reason remember to lash the gates to their posts until the cavalry from the gate company arrive!

Suggestion: We declare one Sunday morning as test time; when interested parties can gather and help each other practice this mechanical method of opening the gates.

Other Problems With the Electronic Gates

North Side Gates

  • In the summer house martins, and other birds, cause the gates to open by flying between the beam.
  • In the winter snow falling, or high winds, keep the gates open.
  • The speed of opening and closing varies.  Sometimes the gates don't close properly resulting in a 5% gap or shortfall in the closing mechanism.  I don't know what causes this.
  • Some residents feel that with time, the gates are taking longer to open.
  • Should the base of the gates be greased to stop the grating noise when they close?

South Side Gates

Presently permanently open; awaiting Skewen Welding to fix.

Alternative Gate Security Suggestions

Key Pad
I heard that Barrett's original plan was for residents to have a keypad to operate the gates, thus making the community more secure.  I also heard that this option was ruled because it would cause delivery problems, specifically the postman, and possibly the emergency services also objected to this plan.

Camera Surveillance
As a security measure we could mount one or more cameras to monitor the roads.  I mention this as an idea people have floated.

Guy's Position
Security does not come naturally to me, fortunately, this an area where Pauline is very keen and has natural aptitude.  In a nutshell, I now see the importance of security, but I am a follower rather than a leader on this topic.

Request: Ideas and Comments

If you have ideas, or tips concerning the gates, or security then I would be delighted to extend my knowledge.

Email me:

Guy's Humour


The Gates Are About to Close
By Charlene Wexler

I pace back and forth, sure that the gates will close and we will miss our plane. As the other passengers board I am nervously waiting for my sister to come back with her cup of Starbucks.

Of course we don't miss the plane. As usual, she manages to make it just before the doors close. She smiles at me. "Oh, they're boarding already," she comments. I don't have to answer because the flight attendant announces, "The gates are about to close" as we scramble onto the plane.

After we settle comfortably in our seats, she turns to me and says, "You and dad would be the first ones in line at the concentration camps."

She hit the nail on the head; our differences in personality go way back. I am like my father -- always early, doing everything yesterday; and she is like my mother -- always late, doing everything tomorrow. Both equally annoying habits.

We arrive at the Detroit Airport, Gate Number 10, and scurry down the concourse to Gate Number 59. I'm in a panic; we have only 40 minutes before our connecting plane takes off. Somewhere around Gate 40 she decides we have time to stop for lunch. I'm nervously tapping my fingers while we wait for the lunch to arrive.

When our sandwiches finally get to the table I pay the bill and make my sister leave with sandwich in hand. "What a dumb idea to stop for lunch," I say to her. "We have only ten minutes before the flight boards."

I run her down the concourse to Gate Number 59, anticipating a closed gate. Of course I'm wrong. The plane is not even there yet. A 20-minute delay is posted. She gives me a dirty look as she walks off to get another cup of coffee. I just slink into a chair and wait.

We make it on the plane and to our destination with only one other mishap. She almost left her suitcase in the airport. But as usual, everything worked out for her. It always does, although I don't know why.

To her credit, she is a very efficient designer working two jobs, while I am retired, with less pressure. On the other hand, she has set a pattern whereby everyone expects her to be late, and would be shocked if she wasn't. And her last-minute-itis has been passed down to the next generation. I've heard her son say, "Mom, we have ten minutes. Do you want to go see a movie?"

I guess it goes back to when she was a three year-old stage performer singing, "I'm a slow poke now."

I guess nobody told her that it wasn't supposed to be a lifetime project!


The Irish Police Force (Garda and Gardaì) Funny Irish Phrases

This is more of a driving licence than a passport story.

To be sure, your man Prawo Jazdy is a slippery fellow.  He's wanted for 50 different driving offences all over Ireland.  Now, Prawo is clever because every time we book him, his driving licence has a different address.  All the Gardaì in Ireland have a different theory about how this 'Scarlet Pimpernel' escapes the clutches of the law.  Finally, the penny dropped, Prawo Jardy is not a Hungarian name, but the Polish words for Driving Licence.

The Garda had caught 53 different Polish drivers, but thought they were dealing with the same man.  Naturally, the Polish community in Ireland are having a good laugh about Mr Prawo Jazdy.

*Garda is the Irish Police force, it also means one policeman.  GardaƬ is the plural.

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