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Waterways Chronology from 1722 to 1771

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Chronology Index

1722

River Don

Joseph 1 Atkinson

Doncaster Corporation commissioned him, with Joshua Mitchel and William Palmer, to survey the river.

River Don

Joshua Mitchel

Doncaster Corporation commissioned him, with William Palmerl and Joseph Atkinson, to survey the river.

River Don

William Palmer

Doncaster Corporation commissioned him, with Joshua Mitchel and Joseph Atkinson, to survey the river.

Norfolk and Suffolk Broads

Promoted by Act.

River Don

William Palmer

He produced a survey showing the whole river up to Sheffield could be made navigable.

1724

Between 1660 and 1724 river navigation increased from 685 miles to 1160 miles, achieved by improvements to many rivers including the Aire & Calder, Douglas, Idle, Irwell, Kennet and Weaver.

River Great Ouse

Colonel John Armstrong

Was asked by the people of Lynn to survey the river.

Mersey & Irwell Navigation

Work started.

River Nene

Navigation from Thrapston to Peterborough promoted by Act.

1726

River Don

Act passed to make the river navigable from Doncaster to Tinsley.

Forth & Clyde Canal

First surveyed.

River Ouse (Yorkshire)

William Palmer

He surveyed the river above York while working for York corporation.

River Wear

Promoted by an Act.

River Don

William Palmer

He caught a fever and was dangerously ill while the Bill to make the river navigable to Sheffield was in the commons.

1727

River Avon (Bristol)

Navigation between Hanham Mills and Bath opened.

Beverley Beck

Promoted by Act of Parliament.

River Don

Joseph 1 Atkinson

Appeared as engineer to support a Bill to extend the navigation from Holmstile to Sheffield.

River Ouse (Yorkshire)

William Palmer

He produced a survey of the whole river from York to Trent Falls for a new Act of parliament that established trustees for the river. After the Act was passed he was taken on as manager and engineer.

River Ouse (Yorkshire)

Promoted by Act.

River Avon (Bristol)

John Hore

The first barge arrived at Bath after the 11.5 miles of river below the city had been made navigable by 6 locks and other works said to have been built by him.

1728

Kennet and Avon Canal

John Hore

He produced some figures of what was spent on making the Kennet navigable but these were rejected by the proprietors as he had kept no proper accounts. He was therefore not given the money he was claiming.

Stroudwater Canal

John Hore

He surveyed the route and recommended a 8.25 mile canal, with 12 locks, to take 60-ton barges at an estimated cost of 20,000.

1730

Stroudwater Canal

An Act was passed to make the Stroudwater (a small river or stream) navigable.

River Weaver

Thomas Robinson

He was appointed surveyor-general.

River Weaver

Work started.

1731

Beverley Beck

Navigation opened.

River Don

John, senior Smith

He was appointed engineer.

1732

River Arun

Promoted as a navigation under Act.

River Ouse (Yorkshire)

Promoted by Act.

Parnall's Canal

Closed due to a tunnel fall.

River Weaver

Opened in the beginning of 1732, having 11 wooden locks.

1733

River Lee

William Whittenbury

Surveyed the river. Later he tendered for the erection of a flash lock, providing a model with the tender, which was accepted.

River Witham Navigation

James Scribo

He surveyed the river and warned that, unless drastic action was taken immediately, not only would the navigation fail but also the lands between Lincoln and Boston would be lost for want of draining.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

John Hore

He started his survey of the navigation and later recommended the building of a canal for the estimated cost of 12,870 against the 9,355 he estimated was needed to make the river navigable.

1734

River Dee

Promoted by Act.

1735

River Weaver

Thomas Robinson

He ceased to be surveyor-general.

1736

Mersey & Irwell Navigation

Opened.

Worsley Brook Navigation project

Thomas Steers

About this time he did a survey for the navigation Act.

1737

Bridgewater Canal

Authorised under Act.

River Roding

Promoted by an Act.

1739

River Lee

Promoted under Act.

1740

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Eyes

He made a survey of the proposed navigation and together with Thomas Steers produced a projection.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

Thomas Steers

He produced a projection of the proposed navigation together with John Eyes who had made the survey on which it was based.

River Colne

Promoted by an Act.

River Medway

Navigation between Maidstone and Tonbridge was promoted by Act.

River Lee

William Whittenbury

Is recorded as being surveyor to Trust.

1742

Douglas Navigation

Opened around 1742.

1744

Beverley Beck

Promoted by Act of Parliament.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

Joseph 1 Atkinson

Was granted a leese of the River Calder for 3,600.

River Dee

Promoted by Act.

1747

Norfolk and Suffolk Broads

Promoted by Act.

River Salwarpe

5 locks built by Lord Windsor around the time of the Restoration but the intended sixth lock was not completed. Bills introduced in 1693 and 1747 but no work done.

River Wear

Promoted by an Act.

1748

River Great Ouse

William Elstobb

About this date he and the Kinderley's proposed cutting off the great bend near King's Lynn.

River Great Ouse

Nathaniel Kinderley

About this date he, his son and William Elstobb proposed cutting off the great bend near King's Lynn.

River Lug

Mr Chinn

About this date he built half-locks (having only single-gates) on the river.

River Ouse (Yorkshire)

John, senior Smith

He surveyed the river and recommended vigorous dredging.

River Trent

Leonard Fosbrooke

Blocked the river at Wilden with his ferry rope, then built a bridge of boats and defended it with hired men, to stop a group of Nottingham merchants from using the river.

River Great Ouse

Charles Labelye

The new Denver Sluice was opened incorporating the navigation lock that he designed.

1749

River Avon (Bristol)

Navigation Act.

River Trent

Hayne

Sank a barge in King's Mill Lock, where it remained for 8 years, as part of his plans to preserve a monopoly of trade on the river.

1750

Aire and Calder Navigation and River Aire

Joseph 1 Atkinson

Leesed the Aire Navigation for 4,400 a year, jointly with Thomas Wilson

Aire and Calder Navigation and River Aire

Thomas Wilson

Leesed the Aire Navigation for 4,400 a year, jointly with Joseph Atkinson

River Colne

Promoted by an Act.

River Medway

The Navigation between Maidstone and Tonbridge was opened about this date.

1751

River Avon (Warwick)

Made navigable by Act.

River Don

Joseph 1 Atkinson

Became a lessee of the river, with Joseph Broadbent and Thomas Smith, at 3,500 a year plus 6.25% interest on new capital expenditure that they requested.

River Don

Joseph Broadbent

Became a lessee of the river, with Joseph Atkinson and Thomas Smith, at 3,500 a year plus 6.25% interest on new capital expenditure that they requested.

River Don

Thomas Smith

Became a lessee of the river, with Joseph Broadbent and Joseph Atkinson, at 3,500 a year plus 6.25% interest on new capital expenditure that they requested.

River Don

Navigation opened.

River Great Ouse

Promoted under Act.

Little Ouse or Brandon River

A second act was passed to make the river navigable and to appoint commissioners.

River Nar

River improvements authorised by an Act.

River Nar

John Aram

Instructed by the Nar Commissioners, together with Langley Edwards, to make a survey and estimate for making the river navigable.

River Nar

Langley Edwards

Instructed by the Nar Commissioners, together with John Aram, to make a survey and estimate for making the river navigable.

1752

River Ouse (Yorkshire)

John, senior Smith

About this time he surveyed the river and produced a plan for a lock at Naburn, which he estimated would cost 5,517.

Whitby Canal

Built between 1752 and 1754.

1753

River Cart

Authorised by an Act but no work done under this Act.

Middle Level Navigation

Promoted by Act.

River Nene

Thomas Yeoman

He surveyed the river from Thrapston to Northampton.

Salford - Wigan Canal project

William Taylor

He surveyed the line of the proposed canal, which was to take water from the Irwell and return it to the navigable part of the river.

River Nene

John Squires

He proposed a plan for making the river navigable from Thrapston to Northampton for 13,000 guineas.

1754

River Nene

Ferdinando Stratford

Around this time he put proposals to the Western Division commissioners for making their part of the river navigable.

River Nene

Promoted by Act.

Sankey Brook Navigation

Henry Berry

Surveyed the line of the canal with William Taylor.

Sankey Brook Navigation

William Taylor

Surveyed the line of the canal with Henry Berry.

Whitby Canal

Built between 1752 and 1754.

1755

Stroudwater Canal

Thomas Yeoman

He made a survey and proposed building a reservior to supply the mills on the proposed navigation.

Sankey Brook Navigation

Authorised by Act.

1756

River Ivel

Langley Edwards

He surveyed the river and produced a plan to make it navigable from Tempsford to Biggleswade Mill.

River Nene

Navigation from Thrapston to Northampton promoted by Act.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Smeaton

He was asked to survey a navigation between Wakefield and Elland but was too busy with work on the Eddystone lighthouse.

Louth Navigation

John Grundy

He reported on his preliminary survey of the proposed navigation.

1757

River Blyth

An Act authorised the navigation.

Gwauncaegurwen Canal

Existed in 1757 carrying coal and men.

River Ivel

Thomas Yeoman

He and Langley Edwards were appointed surveyors.

River Ivel

Navigation improvements authorised by an Act.

River Lee

John Clark

Was appointed surveyor following the death of William Whittenbury.

Sankey Brook Navigation

Opened.

River Tern

Used before 1757, when the Tern Forge that it served was closed.

Sankey Brook Navigation

The Sankey Brook Navigation, later called the St Helen's Canal, was opened.

Sankey Brook Navigation

The first recorded staircase lock on British Canals, Old Double Lock on the Sankey Brook Navigation.

River Blyth

Thomas Manning

He gave evidence for the navigation Bill that the river could easily be made navigable.

River Ivel

Langley Edwards

Gave evidence to the Parliamentary committee examining the navigation bill. He proposed a depth of 3 foot for 20 ton barges which would pay a charge of 3 pence a lock.

River Ivel

Langley Edwards

Was appointed surveyor together with Thomas Yeoman.

River Nar

Langley Edwards

He was paid 100 for survey and for "putting out the works from King's Lynn to Westacre for himself and his assistants untill the same is completed". He produced an estimate of 2,500 for the entire works, chiefly for the making of new cuts.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Smeaton

He was again asked to survey a navigation between Wakefield and Elland and agreed to come in the autumn, requesting a scale plan of the river in preparation.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

He reported the results of his survey to the commissioners, estimating the cost of the work at around 3,000.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Smeaton

He reported to a meeting at Halifax on his proposals, based on his recent survey, for a 23½ mile navigation to take 20 to 25 ton craft with a draught of up to 3 feet 6 inches. This was to run from Wakefield to Salterhebble bridge.

1758

Calder and Hebble Navigation

Promoted by an Act.

River Ivel

Navigation improvements completed to Biggleswade (7 miles).

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Brindley

At the request of Earl Gower, Lord Anson and Thomas Broade he surveyed the line of a canal from Wilden Ferry to Stoke-on-Trent.

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Brindley did a survey for Earl Gower for a canal from Wilden Ferry on the River Trent to Stoke-on-Trent.

River Trent

Henry Bradford

Proposed to make the rivers Trent and Tame navigable to Tamworth.

River Weaver

Henry Berry

Undertook a survey of the river and proposed improvements to the locks and navigation channel.

River Nene

Case

Put in plans for improvements to the Western Division of the river but later dissented from these proposals and the terms required for the work.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Eyes

Did a survey to extend the proposed navigation to Sowerby Bridge.

River Nene

John, junior Smith

He put in an estimate for improving the navigation between Thrapston and Northampton. His plans were rejected in favour of those from a Mr Case who later withdrew his proposals. Smith then submitted new plans and an estimate of 14,070 4s 2½d that was accepted.

River Nene

Mr Wyman

He put forward a proposal for making the river navigable from Thrapston to Northampton. His plan was approved by Thomas Yeoman but he withdrew in favour of a plan by John Smith junior "on account of Mr Smith's cheaper proposals, his Integrity and superior Experience in such affairs".

River Nene

Thomas Yeoman

He was asked examine the propsals of John Smith junior and Mr Wyman for making the western division of the river navigable and found that both schemes were sound.

River Wear

Joseph Robson

As engineer to the commissioners he did an estimate for extending the navigation to New Bridge.

River Nene

John, junior Smith

The contract was signed for his river improvements that included 20 pound-locks 10 feet 6 inches wide and 100 feet long.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Smeaton

He was appointed part-time superintendent (or engineer) at 250 a year.

River Nar

Langley Edwards

He was asked to complete the work on the river by 1st January 1759, lter extended to 15th February but with a 20 a week penalty for any over-run.

1759

Bridgewater Canal

The Duke of Bridgewater obtained an Act of Parliament authorising him to build a canal from his collieries in Worsley to supply coal to Manchester.

River Nar

John Aram

Was paid ten guineas for his part in surveying the river.

River Nene

John, junior Smith

The navigation reached Wellingborough where he built wharves.

River Nene

Thomas Yeoman

He reported that the navigation between Wansford and Waternewton was very bad in places and that the commissioners seem to have had little or no authority over the proprietors, who had sole use of the tolls for themselves.

Stroudwater Canal

Thomas Yeoman

He gave evidence in support of the Bill that became an Act in early April.

Stroudwater Canal

An Act was passed allowing the navigation to be built without locks.

River Stort

Act passed but no work done.

River Wear

John Smeaton

He appeared in Parliament supporting the bill that became the Wear Act and was asked to make a survey and prepare a plan for buildinf 12 locks and a number of short cuts.

River Wear

Promoted by an Act.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

Was asked to resurvey the river and again estimated 3,000 as the cost of improvements.

River Blyth

John Grundy

He was asked to give a second opinion on Langley Edwards survey for the navigation but was too busy to take on the task immediately. He did however set out his terms for the work which proved too expensive for the commissioners to consider.

Bridgewater Canal

James Brindley

At this date he was part-time assistant engineer for the canal and had started a survey of the Worsley to Manchester section..

River Nar

Langley Edwards

He completed the navigation but was in dispute with the commissioners over the payment of the costs for two additional staunches that had been found to be needed.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

He sent his regrets at being unable to attend the commissioners meeting. Unforseen circumstances had detained him at Biggleswade.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

He attends a meeting of the commissioners at which they place a contract for earthworks.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Smeaton

His pay for work as engineer began and it is believed that construction started after this date.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

Joseph Nickalls

He assisted Smeaton on the Wakefield to Dewsbury section.

1760

Aire and Calder Navigation and River Aire

John Gott

Was appointed engineer by Peter Birt, the lessee of the navigation. Over the next few years he spent about 4,000 on capital improvements and 9,000 on maintenance, mainly on weirs.

Stretford and Leigh Branch (Bridgewater Canal)

Authorised by the Bridgewater Canal Act.

Bridgewater Canal

James Brindley

As Engineer for the canal he gives evidence to parliament.

Bridgewater Canal

Authorised under Acts.

River Weaver

Promoted by Act.

River Wey

John Smeaton

He was engaged on the extension of the navigation from Guildford to Godalming.

River Wey

Promoted by Act (extension from Guildford to Godalming).

Fletcher's Canal

James Brindley

He devised a system for pumping water from the Wet Earth colliery using a water from the river Irwell to drive a wheel. The works included a half mile channel which forty years later were converted into the canal.

Louth Navigation

John Smeaton

The town clerk of Louth wrote to him asking for assistance. He replied five days later requesting more information and adds "P.S. Is the expense and practicallity the chief point, or the getting the Bill through Parliament on account of expected opposition?".

Louth Navigation

John Smeaton

The town clerk of Louth wrote saying that little opposition was was expected and that it was desireable to get the canal Bill into Parliament in the next session. However, the promoters were not willing to proceed until he had confirmed John Grundy's report.

Louth Navigation

John Smeaton

He replied to the letter of the 1st advising them to hasten slowly and explained that he was busy and would no wish them to delay their Bill because of him.He also wrote
" I will, however, give you this caution to be very careful of giving public notice as early as possible of your intention to apply to Parliament and in making the gentlemen of your country acquainted with your scheme. Be very careful in applying to the land-owners whose estates lay upon or near the intended navigation, and if possible get the consent of the majority of the principals of those who may be affected by it, for if the least opposition arises, which seldom shows itself till after the petition is presented to the House. they generallyhang upon those matters; for upon this footing the Wey Bill was thrown out last year, tho' it is likely to pass this, and the present year the Tamworth petition has been thrown out upon the same footing without ever entering into the merits thereof.
I am Sir
Your most humble servant.
J. Smeaton".

River Blyth

Samuel Jones

Was assistant engineer to Langley Edwards.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

Defects discovered in newly constructed bridges prompt the commissioners to seek his explaination but they find his whereabouts are unknown.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

He writes to the commisioners saying that he is detained on business and cannot attend their meeting on the 9th but he "was surprised at the account of the brickwork as I have had many built of the same dimensions of wall and have never yet had one failed".

Louth Navigation

John Grundy

Went though his proposal for a 9 lock, 11 mile, navigation with John Smeaton.

Louth Navigation

John Smeaton

He met John Grundy and went through Grundy's report and confirmed that Tetney Haven was the proper outfall to provide communication with the Trent so that flat bottom barges could navigate into Yorkshire without going to sea. He estimated the cost as 15,590 for a 'Two Barge Canal', 13,686 for a "One Barge Canal" and 10,884 for "Lighter drawing 2 feet".

River Don

James Brindley

Called into to advise the company on changes to the navigation and to estimate the costs of altering three fixed bridges to swing bridges.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

He writes to the commisioners saying he is sorry he did not attend their meeting on the 20th.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

He attended a meeting with the commisioners and appologised for missing the last meeting as he had arrived a day late due to having been taken ill on the road and he had other jobs to complete. He had missed another meeting due to a fall from his horse and a third due to his horse being taken lame on the road.

1761

Stretford and Leigh Branch (Bridgewater Canal)

Completed.

River Blyth

Samuel Jones

Was appointed as toll-collector, surveyor of works, lock-keeper and warehouse-keeper at the salary of 45 a year.

Bridgewater Canal

James Brindley

Surveys the line to the Mersey.

Bridgewater Canal

Sir Roger Newdigate

Acted as Counsel in connetion with theBridgewater Canal extension to the Mersey.

Bridgewater Canal

The Duke of Bridgewater's canal, including the aqueduct across the River Irwell at Barton, opened.

River Nene

Navigation from Northampton to Peterborough opened.

Trent and Mersey Canal

John Smeaton

He reviewed James Brindley's 1758 plan for a canal from Stoke-on-Trent to Wilden Ferry and suggested that the canal could be extended "to join the navigable river that falls into the west sea" at a cost of 77,939.

River Trent

John Smeaton

He said: "the present navigation is much obstructed by shoals and scours, insomuch that in several places, in the common state of the river in dry seasons, there is not above 8 inches depth of water, and that at such times, without the aid of flashes from King's Mills upon the Trent, and the lowest mills upon the Derwent, the navigation would then be impracticable".

River Witham Navigation

Langley Edwards

Together with John Grundy and John Smeaton he presented the results of their survey of the river between Lincoln and Boston.

River Witham Navigation

John Grundy

Together with Langley Edwards and John Smeaton he presented the results of their survey of the river between Lincoln and Boston.

River Witham Navigation

John Smeaton

Together with John Grundy and Langley Edwards he presented the results of their survey of the river between Lincoln and Boston.

Bridgewater Canal

The original Barton Aqueduct was built by James Brindley in 1761 to take the Duke of Bridgewater's epoch making canal across the River Irwell.

River Nene

Thomas Yeoman

Around this time he surveyed the newly opened navigation and gave it a favourable report.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

The commissioners very dissatisfied with his non-attendence at meetings advertised the meeting in the press in the hope it would ensure his presence. He arrived late and appologised.

Bridgewater Canal

James Brindley

His Barton Aqueduct over the Mersey & Irwell Navigation was opened.

River Blyth

Langley Edwards

The navigation was completed at a cost of 3,822 compared to his original estimate of 3,000.

River Nene

John, junior Smith

His navigation works to Northampton were completed.

Bridgewater Canal

James Brindley

Conducted a survey for the extension of the canal from Longford Bridge to Hempstones, a little above Runcorn, including a branch to Stockport from Sale Moor. His work on this continued until January 1762.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Gwyn

He and Matthias Scott were appointed as surveyors.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

Matthias Scott

He and John Gwyn were appointed as surveyors.

1762

Hulme Lock Branch (Bridgewater Canal)

Authorised under the Bridgewater Canal Act.

Preston Brook Branch (Bridgewater Canal)

Authorised under the Bridgewater Canal Act.

Bridgewater Canal

Authorised under Act.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

John Smeaton

He carried out a survey and estimated the cost of a navigation as 16,697.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Thomas Yeoman

He did a survey and estimate for the navigation.

Chester Canal

James Brindley

Surveys canal line.

River Don

John, senior Smith

At this time John Needham was acting as his deputy.

Sankey Brook Navigation

John Eyes

He surveyed the extension of the canal towards the River Mersey, the Act for which was passed this year.

Sankey Brook Navigation

Authorised by Act.

River Witham Navigation

Promoted by an Act.

Bridgewater Canal

James Brindley

He went to London to give evidence on the Bill to extend the canl to the Hempstones, near Runcorn.

Bridgewater Canal

James Brindley

He told the Lords committee concerning the extension to the canal "The great use it will be in assuring a traffic to Liverpool and Manchester, and if it is carried into execution will reduce the price of the carriage of goods full one half".

River Don

John Needham

Working as deputy to John Smith he constructed swing bridges based on a model that James Brindley supplied.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Gwyn

He was assigned to collect tolls on for the newly opened part of the lower river.

River Witham Navigation

Langley Edwards

He was appointed surveyor at 25 a year. He was asked to put a chain across the river between Stamp End and Washingborough ferry for the collection of a 2.5 pence toll, to survey the whole length of the river and prepare plans for a sea-lock.

Louth Navigation

John Grundy

A petition was presented to parliament for a navigation based on his proposals and an Act was passed in March 1763.

1763

River Don

James Brindley

Was paid 5 guineas for helping William Martin to estimate the cost of a connection from below Thorne to the Trent.

Louth Navigation

Authorised by an Act.

River Wey

Extension from Guildford to Godalming opened.

1764

River Blyth

Samuel Jones

His employment is renewed at a reduced salary of 42 a year.

Forth & Clyde Canal

Second survey.

Louth Navigation

Opened.

River Roding

Opened.

River Weaver

James Brindley

Checked Robert Pownall's plans to make Witton Brook navigable.

River Weaver

Robert Pownall

As the trustees' engineer he was asked to prepare plans to make Witton Brook navigable with a depth of 4.5 feet. These plans were checked by James Brindley.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Thomas Yeoman

The following extract from his letter to John Smeaton demonstrates the difficulties he had with the navigation promoters:
. . . Now Suppose I should tell you that I am not paid for what I have done will you believe me and if I should add that the under Sheriff took it in his head two Days to attend the Survey with Company and order'd provision & to the Water Sides, lay all night at Danbury at my Inn, and left me to pay every thing even so much as his and his friends Corn and Hay for their Horses, will you give credence to it? but so it is my Friend and so it must be, until they take it in their Heads to pay; Should not I charge two Years Interest in September next? . . .
I beg that my best wishes be acceptable to Mrs Smeaton, Children and Self and am with sincerity
Dear Sir
Your most obedient and obliged humble Servt
Thos Yeoman.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Smeaton

He claimed no salary after this date and was replaced by James Brindley in the following January.

1765

Alford Canal project

Featherstone

Mr Featherstone took the levels when the first proposal for this canal was made.

River Avon (Bristol)

Ferdinando Stratford

He revived the 1735 idea of extending the navigation to Chippenham and was supported by the Bristol corporation for a short time before the idea was dropped.

River Blyth

Samuel Jones

He leaves the navigation when the commissioners want to reduce his salary to less than 40 a year.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Langley Edwards

Was approached to prepare a scheme in opposition to Thomas Yeoman's plan for the river but was too busy to take on the work.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

John Grundy

He was asked to prepare proposals for the navigation but was too busy to accept.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Joseph Nickalls

He was asked to prepare proposals for the navigation but was too busy to accept.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

John Smeaton

He was asked to prepare proposals for the navigation but was too busy to accept.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Ferdinando Stratford

He and his brother were retained by Maldon objectors to the navigation. They both contracted ague and fever on the survey from which he died.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

William Stratford

He and his brother were retained by Maldon objectors to the navigation. They both contracted ague and fever on the survey from which he was ill for a year before he recovered..

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Thomas Yeoman

He produced another plan which was used in the application for a Bill to parliament and estimated the cost as 13,000. He proposed widening the river to 30 feet at the surface and 20 feet at the bottom with a depth of 4 feet and locks 70 feet long and 14 feet wide.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

James Brindley

Became engineer in succession to Smeaton.

Donnington Wood Canal

Being cut from Pave Lane to Donnington Wood by the Lilleshall Partnership of Earl Gower with John and Thomas Gilbert.

Driffield Navigation

John Smeaton

About this date he was asked to advise on making the upper river navigable for keels to Driffield. He proposed a 1¼ mile cut with one lock from the river above Wansford to Driffield Beck at the cost of 2,586.

Parrott's Canal

Built around 1765 and formed part of the Coventry Canal line when that was built.

River Weaver

Robert Pownall

As engineer to the Weaver trustees he, together with Hugh Henshall, suveyed various routes for terminating the Trent & Mersey Canal at a junction with the Weaver navigation.

Newdigate Canals

Sir Roger Newdigate

Built canals on his Arbury estate near Nuneaton, expanding an earlier system of "boatways" used to carry coal from the family mines.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

John Gwyn

He was dismissed when Brindley took over responsibility from Smeaton.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

Matthias Scott

He was dismissed when Brindley took over responsibility from Smeaton.

Calder and Hebble Navigation

James Brindley

Following his survey he presents his plans and estimates, for extending the Calder Navigation to Sowerby Bridge, to a meeting of the commisioners. He was then appointed "Surveyor, Manager and Undertaker" for carrying out the works at one and a half guineas a day.

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Brindley

He meets with Josiah Wedgwood and they discusses a navigation to Stoke-on-Trent based on Brindley's 1758 plan.

Trent and Mersey Canal

Josiah Wedgwood

He meets with James Brindley and they discusses a navigation to Stoke-on-Trent based on Brindley's 1758 plan.

River Weaver

Hugh Henshall

He and Robert Pownall were asked to survey routes between Winsford and Lawton, near Kidsgrove, via either Middlewich or Nantwich.

River Weaver

Robert Pownall

He and Hugh Henshall were asked to survey routes between Winsford and Lawton, near Kidsgrove, via either Middlewich or Nantwich.

River Lee

John Smeaton

He was asked to make a survey "so as to settle the navigation on a new plan as will be most conducive to the good of the public".

River Weaver

James Brindley

Said that a junction between the Bridgewater canal and the river was practicable.

1766

Bridgewater Canal

Authorised under Act.

Chelmer & Blackwater Navigation

Promoted under an Act.

Coventry Canal

Henry Bradford

Surveyed a line for a canal from Coventry to Tamworth with a river extension from there to Fazeley.

River Don

John Thompson

He was appointed engineer under John Smith.

River Great Ouse

John Smeaton

He surveyed the river at Lynn with regard to the shifting sands that were proving a hazzard to navigation. He rejected the idea that Denver Sluice had harmed the navigation and recommended confining the channel to solve the problem.

Huddersfield Broad Canal

James Brindley

Surveys line for canal.

Huddersfield Broad Canal

Robert Whitworth

He surveyed from the Calder & Hebble at Cooper Bridge to Kings Mill, Huddersfield.

Kymer's Canal

Richard Evans

Surveyed the route for the proposed canal.

Kymer's Canal

The first Act of Parliament for a canal in Wales.

Leeds and Liverpool Canal

John Longbotham

He proposed a canal from Leeds to Liverpool, according to Joseph Priestley.

Loughborough Navigation

Authorised by Act (river improvements).

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

Thomas Dadford senior

He and Samuel Simcock were the engineers bulding the canal under James Brindley's direction.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

John Baker

Clerk of Works assisting Thomas Dadford senior on the construction of the canal.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

Promoted by an Act.

River Stort

Thomas Yeoman

He became engineer for the navigation.

River Stort

Act passed.

Trent and Mersey Canal

John Brindley

Shareholder in the canal

Trent and Mersey Canal

Duke of Bridgewater Francis Egerton

Shareholder in the canal

Trent and Mersey Canal

Promoted by an Act.

Whitby Canal

Probably closed between 1766 and 1811.

River Witham Navigation

Langley Edwards

The Grand Sluice was opened including the lock he had built beside it.

River Witham Navigation

Boston Grand Sluice was opened in 1766.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

Hugh Henshall

Did the survey for the Act with Samuel Simcock.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

Samuel Simcock

Did the survey for the Act with Hugh Henshall

Trent and Mersey Canal

Matthew Boulton

Subscribed to the canal

Rochdale Canal

James Brindley

He surveyed two routes for the canal and estimated the cost as 79,180 for a route similar to the one later built, and 102,625 for a route through Bury.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

James Brindley

Appointed Surveyor.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

Samuel Simcock

He and Thomas Dadford senior worked as James Brindley's assistants on the canal.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

James Perry

Appointed Treasurer.

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Brindley

Shareholder in the canal

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Falconer

On the committee of the canal company.

Trent and Mersey Canal

Samuel Garbett

On the committee of the canal company.

Trent and Mersey Canal

Edward Sneyd

On the committee of the canal company.

Trent and Mersey Canal

Sir Richard Whitworth

On the committee of the canal company.

Trent and Mersey Canal

Thomas Gilbert

On this date the Bill was presented and after the second reading was referred to a committee which he chaired. He was also a shareholder in the canal.

Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal

James Perry

With a group of supporters decides to promote a Bill for the canal.

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Brindley

He has ten 200 shares in the new company.

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Brindley

Appointed Surveyor-General at 200 p.a.

Trent and Mersey Canal

Hugh Henshall

Appointed Clerk of Works at 150 p.a. to included the cost of a clerk.

Trent and Mersey Canal

John Sparrow

Appointed Clerk at 100 p.a.

Trent and Mersey Canal

Josiah Wedgwood

Appointed Treasurer

River Lee

John Smeaton

He was asked to survey the navigation with Thomas Yeoman as his assistant.

River Lee

Thomas Yeoman

He was asked to survey the navigation as assistant to John Smeaton.

River Lee

John Smeaton

He reported the results of his survey of the navigation, which was developd before the use of pound-locks. He found eighteen flashes at weir and staunches, as well as a lock at Ware and tide-gates at Bromley. He recommended that new cuts should be made (including from Bromley to the Thames and Limehouse, and at Hackney, Edmonton and Waltham Abbey) and the replacement of flash-locks with pound-locks.

River Ancholme

Thomas Yeoman

He reported "Ferriby Sluice had decayed and the Humber water had gone up to Glanford leaving much silt. The New Drain 40 ft wide is reduced to 15 ft - 16 ft in some places which is the chief cause of flooding. Above Glanford it is interrupted by Lug Beds, Weeds, and Sands and wholly silted up for the last miles next to Bishop Briggs."

Driffield Navigation

John Grundy

His report proposes a 10 mile navigation, half river and half canal at an estimated cost of 7,000. This was the basis of the Act passed in the following year.

Ripon Canal

John Smeaton

He surveyed the Ouse and Ure, using the earlier surveys of William Palmer and Richard Ellison, and proposed a lock at Linton and a canal from the Ure at Oxclose to Ripon.

River Ure

John Smeaton

He surveyed the Ouse and Ure, using the earlier surveys of William Palmer and Richard Ellison, and proposed a lock at Linton and a canal from the Ure at Oxclose to Ripon.

1767

River Ancholme

The Ancholme Navigation was promoted under an Act.

Birmingham Canal Navigations

James Brindley

Surveyed the line of the canal.

Cod Beck

John, junior Smith

He supported Richard Firth in giving evidece for the parliamentary Bill.

Coventry Canal

James Brindley

Surveyed the route for the canal.

River Don

John, senior Smith

It was agreed to allow him 3 shillings and 6 pence for every day he worked in his old age.

Driffield Navigation

Authorised by an Act.

Droitwich Canal

James Brindley

Surveyed the route for the canal and is said to have produced alternative estimates for a barge and a narrow canal.

River Lee

Promoted under Act.

Oxford Canal

James Brindley

Surveyed the route for the canal.

River Ouse (Yorkshire)

Promoted by Act.

Ripon Canal

John, junior Smith

He was appointed resident engineer for the canal and Ure Navigation.

Ripon Canal

Promoted by Act.

River Swale

John, junior Smith

He was appointed engineer.

River Ure

Promoted by an Act to extend the Yorkshire Ouse Navigation.

Ripon Canal

John Smeaton

He gave evidence to parliament for the Ure and Ripon Canal Act.

River Swale

John Grundy

He gave evidence on the Bill for the navigation estimating the cost as 19,844.

River Ure

John Smeaton

He gave evidence to parliament for the Ure and Ripon Canal Act.

Trent and Mersey Canal

James Brindley

In a letter of the 2nd March Josiah Wedgwood expresses concern that Brindley is endangering his life and health through over work. On the 2nd of April he says "Poor Mr Brindley was not well enough to attend the Committee".

Ripon Canal

William Jessop

The Act for the Ure and Ripon Canal was passed based on his survey.

River Ure

William Jessop

The Act for the Ure and Ripon Canal was passed based on his survey.

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Jim Shead Waterways Photographer & Writer
Text and photographs copyright of Jim Shead.
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