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Pluto

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Pluto last won the day on July 12 2011

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Profile Information

  • Gender
    Male
  • Location
    Barlic
  • Interests
    European inland waterway history, including the transfer of technology during the early industrial revolution; wooden boat construction on inland waterways; the history of opening bridges; and the L&LC.

Previous Fields

  • Occupation
    industrial historian
  • Boat Name
    Pluto

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  • Website URL
    http://www.mikeclarke.myzen.co.uk/home.htm

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  1. There was a suggestion that the guillotine gates were built from parts of the Tardebigge lift, though it is difficult to see what could have been reused from this illustration. One possible use for the culverts could be to keep a supply going to the Stratford on a Sunday, when the stoplock could have been closed to boats.
  2. I would suggest that 'pointless' is not the best definition, as such canals were considered beneficial by those who promoted them, and there was a great feeling that canals were the answer to economic problems in the late 18th century. In this respect, it is worth comparing canals promoted 1760-1780 with those promoted in the 1790s. The former, based on developing existing local industries, tend to be successful, while many of the later, where they hoped canals would attract industry, were unsuccessful. The word 'unviable' is probably a better one to describe the canals being considered here, but that does not really take into account of local pressure for improvement. To some extent the promotion of canals could be said to be analogous to the current Brexit discussions. Our society has not really changed much over the last 250 years, and even the hard-won protection for those in employment is slowly being removed.
  3. There were also wide boats owned by railway companies, such as those working around Liverpool and Hull Docks, plus other shorter-lived operations, such as the West Lancashire railway's boats working between Tarleton and Liverpool, as recorded below in a Rufford Branch ledger.
  4. There is still the same amount of common sense as there ever was, it is just that as the population increases, it gets spread more thinly.
  5. They were to the south of the A65, the last one closing in the 1930s. Check for Ingleton Coalfield on Google and a number of interesting pages turn up.
  6. Correct, and this is the 1780 map of the proposed canal near Ingleton. The other end was to finish at Settle, possibly connecting to the Settle Canal and thence to the L&LC.
  7. I would agree with David, suggesting further that the 2d, 6d etc figures could represent the cost of removing a specific volume of whatever material is there. If done prior to excavation, it could be used for estimating costs; if done during the work, it could be a check on what was being spent. The stations could be simpler, in that they are just the markers which were used to show the route. The specification would give the dimensions for the cross section and any requirement for puddle, etc.
  8. I took these photos last weekend of the route of a proposed canal. The first shows the location of one terminus. Some of the coal mines which the canal was to serve were a few hundred yards beyond the railway viaduct. The second photo shows the river which the canal would have joined, the junction being where a stream entered the river near the caravan site in the distance, just visible on the right. I haven't found anything about how the river was to be made navigable. There was a third terminus for the canal, which would have been with another unbuilt canal. Where was I?
  9. This is at the top of the Tinsley flight, Sheffield, shortly after Geoff Wheat bought her in 1968.
  10. I have a copy of a notebook which has a detailed map of the canal drawn by a canal employee and possibly dating from around 1900. The locks are number consecutively from Sowerby Bridge, and the bridges are all named. I know that some people use locks numbered east and west, but that seems to be a modern alternative. The pages with summit lock west are below.
  11. No, it's just as Voltaire suggests in your tag line, Scottish vandals are more civilised.
  12. Not exactly true for the larger Yorkshire river navigations, but I take your point. The bridge survey was also to identify responsibility for maintenance, something not needed for locks.
  13. I don't think this is entirely accurate, and the 1845 Act would have little influence on canal building, though it may have been passed because earlier problems with canal building were now re-emerging with the Railway Mania. Early, pre-1780, canal Acts could have specific clauses protecting certain sections, but there were only three in the 1770 L&LC Act for an over 100-mile-long canal. I suspect that provisions under canal Acts need to be divided into pre-1793 and post-1793, the year when deposited plans became a specific requirement to illustrate what the canal Bill was proposing. Prior to that there was no requirement for a deposited plan, though plans were usually drawn up showing which land was likely to be taken. Deviation was usually allowed by the Act. Exactly how land was purchased would be an interesting area of research, and I do have copies of the payments made for land and damages for the L&LC. However, this was done circa 1827, after the canal had been completed, so can be difficult to interpret. The text below is part of a letter reporting on the Settle Canal Bill, and shows why that Bill did not succeed in Parliament and become an Act - supporters only owned 2.75 miles of the route of the 15-mile-long proposed canal.
  14. What I was trying to suggest is that some canals, like the L&LC, did not use numbers, but that others, as mentioned above, did. A national survey was made, I suspect in the 1960s and which Joseph should be able to find in the Waterways Archive, which identified ownership and responsibility for every bridge on the canal system. The division of responsibilities between the different parts of the nationalised industries and other authorities may have been the catalyst for this survey. It certainly brought some standardisation to the system, but it seems not one completely uniform. With regard to identifying bridges on the L&LC, I have found lists compiled at least as far back as the 1840s for the eastern end, from Blackburn to Leeds, with a list for those from Blackburn to the bottom of Wigan Locks dating from 1910, and a further list for the western end, from Liverpool to the Wigan dating from 1775. Bridge numbers were used, though it is a little uncertain where the numbering started and finished, and records relating to canal activity usually use bridge names to identify sites. This link http://www.mikeclarke.myzen.co.uk/Bridges.pdf is to a list I compiled in 2008, which should give some idea of the difficulty in identifying bridges, particularly those in Liverpool, where the majority towards the end of the canal were built after the canal was completed. I have tried to include name changes for bridges in this area, and there was the occasional change elsewhere. I don't think there was a similar national survey of locks, but exactly the same sort of problems can be found in naming and numbering them.
  15. I was the one who sent an enquiry to Joseph, following an enquiry which was sent to me. My initial response was: I am fairly certain that bridge numbering was standardised around the time of the 1968 Transport Act which set new parameters for the maintenance of bridges. British Waterways had previously, to some extent, only been responsible for the surface of the bridge's highway, with the new Act giving responsibility for load bearing aspects. There was a national survey of bridges, identifying who was responsible for each bridge. Those built after a canal opened, such as railway bridges and strengthened road bridges, were usually not the responsibility of the canal company. The survey identified the type, possible maximum load, and ownership of all canal bridges. The work was probably done as part of a national general engineering survey done in 1965-1966, which could have resulted in bridge re-numbering. Having quickly looked at the holdings in the Waterways Archive at Ellesmere Port, this does seem to be more likely, with the original survey taking place from 1963. Some canals had never numbered their bridges, relying upon names. Such bridges seem to have acquired numbers at this time. On the Leeds & Liverpool Canal, a simple number meant that the bridge was the responsibility of British Waterways, while if a letter was used, the responsibility lay elsewhere.
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