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Everything posted by Pluto

  1. Not the Rochdale, but the Lancaster. It is the section of the canal filled in circa 1960, and the skew bridge carried Fylde Road over the canal. The map below is of the site in 1880.
  2. Numerous canals have been built in Europe for timber rafting, such as all those in Finland. There was also what is known in Germany as 'Trift', which was basically firewood, and canals for rafting or moving Trift were built all over Germany, Czech, Austria and France. Rafting timber, this time for building, was also done regularly on European rivers, and on the L&LC out of Liverpool in the late 18th century, but was stopped on the canal because of damage to locks and other canal infrastructure.
  3. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  4. A bill head which shows a canal, with one of the earliest skew bridges illustrated - I have taken the address off the top to make it a little more difficult. It is a pretty good representation when compared to OS maps.
  5. Coal used to be delivered to the new mill at Saltaire by canal, with unloading over the towpath, so there was mooring there for many years. When the mill was first being developed there was a proposal for visitor moorings at the Shipley end of the mill, though neither BW, nor the local council, nor the developer were prepared to fund them. The idea raises its head from time to time, but nothing has happened yet, despite this being one of the country's more successful World Heritage sites.
  6. This post cannot be displayed because it is in a forum which requires at least 10 posts to view.
  7. Semis in Leeds??? They were building back-to-backs until 1937, even though they were prohibited nationally from 1909. It's the capital of Yorkshire, y'know.
  8. On the L&LC they are called pools, not pounds. Lock 20 near the bottom of the flight used to be the best place to stop as there was a really good pie shop just up the road.
  9. You've made me translate an article, pdf below, from 1911 on Swiss waterways suggesting that there was some interest in developing new canals at that time. 1911 Oerstereichische Wasserwirtschaft.pdf
  10. In commercial days it took around 2 hours, though you could leave the gates open, with stories of passing a boat in every pool. From the tonnages carried on the canal this may have just been possible in winter, when coal traffic was at its most intense. It took me around 7 hours in the early 1970s, though this was with a short boat, working single handed, and opening and closing both sets of gates.
  11. Looking through my collection, there seem to have been several waterway proposals in 17th century Switzerland. The Canal d'Entreroches is the best known, but there was also an Aarberger Canal which allowed boats from the C d'Entreroches to get to Bern, from where most of the canal-building finance came from. After the closure in 1829, there were plans to rebuild the canal produced twice in the 19th century. Returning to the original question, there is a book, Steigende Pegel, by Anita Siegfried, ISBN 978-03762-054-0, which tells the story of Pietro Caminada and his canal proposals as a novel (in German).
  12. A storm destroyed an aqueduct, though traffic had been on the decline since the mid-18th century as the condition of roads in the area improved. One article suggests 85% of the traffic was wine, much to the delight of the boatmen.
  13. There were more successful Swiss canals, such as the Canal d'Entreroche, planned to link the Rhine and Rhone. The initial section opened circa 1648, and remained in use until 1829. This is the route of the canal, with a wharf house, as seen in 1995.
  14. Sorry, but my computer didn't like the last quote and wouldn't let me alter or finish it. I meant to say that the L&LCS members who look after Kennet, although they get some pleasure from the work, do it more for the general public and to promote the history of the canal. Kennet and Mersey are the only unconverted short boats on the canal, and Kennet is the only one to which the public have access. Last Sunday we had over 450 visitors on board over the day at Skipton, and though it can be a pleasure chatting to them, it is also time consuming. Heritage is one of the many factors which ensure that our canals stay open, and educating the public is an important aspect of encouraging government to keep funding the system. A few more volunteers would be a help in achieving this aim by educating the public to the benefits and heritage of our canals.
  15. The L&LC Society own and operate their heritage boat Kennet to bring pleasure to others, and to show the public the type of boat used on the canal. Only Kennet and Mersey are
  16. I didn't say there were no deaths, just that I had only come across a small number in records. Craft training is based upon the experience of the trainer, which is fine for most situations. The chance of death or injury increases when the working environment is variable, and that was certainly the case at Blisworth, where the ground conditions were unexpected, as was the case with several other tunnels. Miners were employed on most tunnels, an area of expertise where immigrant labour had long been used. Several mines had employed German miners since Elizabethan times, many coming from the Harz region. Even comparatively recently, water power was used extensively underground there, and there was a navigable adit. The two drawings show the Dorothea mine in section, and an idea of how the navigable adit worked. Going back to the OP, it would be interesting to see a compilation of statistics re deaths during canal construction. Tunnels do seem to have been the most dangerous sites, even during railway building, but what about other types of work. Were there any/many during the construction of Pontcysyllte, for example.
  17. After many years researching canal history, I have come across very few deaths or serious injuries mentioned, either in canal records or in newspapers. I suspect the standard of training was higher 100 to 200+ years ago, and management that had actual experience of what they were managing.
  18. Back in 1971, when working for Peter Froud, he managed to get his trip boat Lapwing stuck on a tree stump which had been thrown into the canal. The stump caught on the bottom of the boat and then rolled over, lifting the stern about 5 inches out of the water. It took ages to pull Lapwing off the stump.
  19. It was probably part of the S&SYN improvement in the 1970s/1980s. Is it part of the Doncaster gas works and refuse site? It is the sort of site which would make a good wharf/storage area.
  20. Pluto

    Wigan flight

    Getting back to the subject, this is lock 7 on the Wigan flight in 1954, Although it is a poor photo, the effects of subsidence are clearly visible, with the off side chamber wall curving inwards while the towpath side is moving outwards. Some of the problems with the Wigan flight are caused by similar, if less extreme, results of subsidence.
  21. Pluto

    Wigan flight

    The attached 1911 report on the Wigan flight does give some idea of the problems maintaining locks here. Subsidence has been a continual proble, particularly 1870-1930 when deep mining was taking place in this area. The resulting subsidence required locks to be raised or lowered, with this being made more difficult by distortion of the lock chamber, such that the quoins were no longer at their correct angle for ease of gate operation. Many lock chambers had around 3 inches of taper from top to bottom, with the gate pin being slightly offset to th, which to some extent mae centre line of the quoin post which increased clearance between the quoin and quoin post as the gate opened, ensuring less wear and leakage. The quoin could also be slightly out of vertical, which gave similar benefits to having the chamber width tapered. This also made it slightly easier to hang the gates, and ensuring that the bottom of the mitre touched before the top. The weight of water would then seal the gates as they distorted under pressure. It was also easy to run a saw down the mitre when it began to leak, a task done from a ladder, so hardly conforming with H&S today. All these ramblings do explain why Wigan flight is particularly difficult to maintain, and would need a complete rebuild to overcome the problems. I can hardly see that happening. 1911 Wigan Flight Report.pdf
  22. Caggies tugs used to have a seat in front of the cabin so he could 'inspect' the canal on sunny days.
  23. Hi-viz would be no use in Foulridge if Kennet entered the tunnel, as you can see from the photo a couple of posts earlier that you cannot see anything in front, and the JP3 would drown out a hand bell.
  24. This 1881 'advert' does state that boats were lived on full time, with boat families having no other accommodation. I do think his words are a little emotive, and that many boat families were not the dregs of society, as suggested. I have known all types, from those whose every second word needed buzzing out, to those who attended church regularly. 1881 Lords day observance.pdf
  25. You can't see much from a short boat, as we have tried to explain to canoeists, and CRT.
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