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This Book "Priestley's Navigable Rivers and Canals" by Joseph Priestley was previously published in April 1831. NOTE: Oringinally called "Historical Account of the Navigable Rivers, Canals, and Railways, of Great Britain".
For more information see About this Book

Index Page Link to Previous Page 381

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Stepney and St. Ann Limehouse, to the north of Limehouse Church, into the Thames near Limehouse Bridge Dock. The following are to be paid as


For all Coals, Culm or Cinders, carried or conveyed through King's Weir or the Lock nearest thereto 0s 8d per Chaldron.
For ditto conveyed through Newman's Weir or the Lock nearest thereto 0s 8d ditto.
For ditto conveyed through Lea Bridge or the Lock on the New Cut below the said Bridge 0s 4d ditto.
For ditto on the Cut from Bromley Lock into the Thames 0s 3d ditto.
For all other Goods, Wares, Merchandize or Commodities conveyed through King's Weir, or the Lock nearest thereto 0s 6d per Ton.
For ditto through Newman's Weir or the Lock nearest thereto 0s 6d ditto.
For ditto through Lea Bridge, or the Lock on the New Cut below the said Bridge 0s 3d ditto.
For ditto on the Gut from Bromley Lock into the Thames 0s 2d ditto.
For every Pleasure Boat passing any of the above Locks or Places 1s 0d ditto.

And in Proportion for a greater or lesser Quantity than a Chaldron or Ton.

Five Quarters of Wheat, Rye, Beans, Peas and Tares to be allowed to a Ton; Six Quarters of Barley to a Ton; Eight Quarters of Malt and Oats to ditto; Eight Sacks of Meal or Flour, each containing Five Bushels to ditto; and Ten Quarters of Bran or Pollard to a Ton. No Tonnage Rates to be demanded for any Boat, Barge, Lighter, or other Vessel carrying only Oil Cake, Malt Dust, Pigeon Dung or Manure of any Kind whatsoever.

Money for executing the work may be raised by borrowing on security of the rates, or by annuities secured thereon.

By this act also were allowed to various persons the following sums, viz, to the New River Company, in lieu of a toll taken by them for boats passing their lock at Ware Mill, at four quarterly payments for ever, one shilling for every boat, &c. passing the said lock, and also a clear annual rent of £40; to the owners of Sewardston Mills £45; to the owners of Newman's Weir £19, 5s; to the owners of Parkinson's Weir £16, 15s. 6d.; to the owners of Enfield Mill Stream £40; to the Dean and Chapter of St. Pauls, or their lessee, £25; to Abraham Hume, Esq. £28; to John Archer, Esq. £28; to Sir William Maynard £48, and a wharf to be built for him; all the above sums are annual rents. To Sir William Wake and Peter Floyer, Esq. one penny per ton on all goods, wares and merchandize whatever, conveyed on the said river from above King's Weir to the west tail stream of the Waltham Abbey Powder Mills, in lieu of five shillings toll now taken by them for every vessel passing the lock called Waltham Turnpike.

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The next act obtained was passed in 1779, under the title of 'An Act for preserving the Navigation of the River Lea, in the counties of Hertford, Essex and Middlesex.' This act states that the trustees under the powers of the former enactments, from the amount of the principal money already advanced for the prosecution of the work, and from the sums to be paid yearly as annuities, compensations and other purposes authorized by the acts before granted, cannot liquidate the charges upon them without an advance of the rates to meet the same, they are therefore empowered to demand in future, the following


For all Coals, Culm or Cinders passing King's Weir or the Lock nearest thereto 0s 6d per Chaldron.
For all Malt, ditto, ditto 1s 3d per Ton.
For all Flour, ditto, ditto 0s 4½d ditto.
For other Goods, Wares or Merchandize whatsoever, ditto 0s 6d ditto.
For all Coals, Culm or Cinders passing Newman's Weir or the Lock nearest thereto, not having paid at King's Weir 0s 6d per Chaldron.
For all Malt, ditto, ditto 0s 11d per Ton.
For all Flour, ditto, ditto 0s 4½d ditto.
For all other Goods, ditto, ditto 0s 6d ditto.
For all Coals, Culm or Cinders passing through Lea Bridge or the Lock in the said Cut below the same 0s 7d per Chaldron.
For all Malt, ditto, ditto 0s 5d per Ton.
For all Flour, ditto, ditto 0s 3d ditto.
For all other Goods, ditto, ditto 0s 3d ditto.
For all Malt passing between Bromley Lock and the Thames 0s 2d ditto.
For all other Goods, ditto, ditto 0s 2d ditto.
For every Pleasure Boat passing any of the above 1s 0d each.
For every empty Lighter, &c. not having conveyed Goods that have paid Dues, or not having delivered any Lading liable to the same 5s 0d ditto.

Every Load of Wood to be reckoned as Five Tons.

The tolls to be reduced as the annuities fall in, and when the tonnage payable to Sir William Wake and Mr. Floyer shall not amount in any year to £160, the deficiency shall be made up by the trustees; other regulations as to the height of water in Various parts are made by the said act, but as they are not of general importance, it is unnecessary to quote them.

Another act was obtained in 1805, entitled, 'An Act for the better Preservation and further Improvement of the Navigation of the River Lea, in the counties of Hertford, Essex and Middlesex.' This act applies chiefly to the regulations of the depth of water, the prevention of its waste and other particulars of a similar nature. It also enacts that in future no vessel using this navigation, shall carry at any one time more than forty tons of goods, &c.

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Here the Lea River Navigation may be properly said to end, as the branch to join it with the Regent's Canal is known as the Lea Union or Hertford Union Canal, and was constructed by Sir George Duckett; it is, however, so connected with the Lea, that we have thought it needless to give the particulars under a separate head.

The act for forming this union was passed in May, 1824, under the title of 'An Act for making and maintaining a navigable Canal from the River Lea Navigation, in the parish of St. Mary Stratford Bow, in the county of Middlesex, to join the Regent's Canal, at or near a place called Old Ford Lock, in the parish of St. Matthew Bethnal Green, in the said county of Middlesex;' whereby Sir George Duckett, Bart. his heirs and assigns, are empowered to make the communication and all other works connected with it. They have also power to borrow money on the rates, or by mortgaging the canal and works, to the extent of £50,000. They are also authorized to demand the following


For all Goods Wares and Merchandize whatever on Vessels entering the Canal from the Lea River or the Regent's Canal 1s 0d per Ton.
For all Horses, Mules or Asses, passing on the Towing-paths, unless drawing or haling Barges and other Vessels 0s 6d each.

Parcels not exceeding Five Hundred Weight, to be charged according to Rates fixed by Order of Justices at the Quarter Sessions.

Wharfs may be erected, and the following demanded as


For all Goods, Wares and Merchandize remaining on the Wharf Forty-eight Hours 3d per Ton.
For every Day after that Time 6d ditto.

The water in the summit level of this canal must be 6 inches above the top water mark of the Regent's Canal, and a stop-lock is to be formed within one hundred yards of that canal. The River Lea Company may, if they think fit, place a dam at the mouth of the canal, to prevent any but flood-water being taken from their navigation. The rights of the Commissioners of Sewers and of the East London Water Works Company, are also secured by separate clauses in the act.

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The length of the river navigation, from its commencement to its fall into the Thames, is about twenty-six miles; and the Hertford and Lea Union Canal, from Hertford to the junction with the Stort Navigation, is about five miles; of the Lea Cut or Branch to avoid the circuit of the Isle of Dogs, one mile and a half; and of the cut made by Sir George Duckett, communicating with the Regent's Canal, one mile. The course of this navigation runs southerly from near Hoddesden to the Thames, and divides Essex from the counties of Hertford and Middlesex; the country is very flat, particularly as it approaches the Thames.

To observe that legislative enactments took place for this navigation above four hundred years ago, fully stamps the importance of this water communication, which has afforded a cheap and ready transit for corn, malt, wool and other agricultural produce to the metropolis; and in return, of coal, timber, deals, bricks, paving-stones, groceries, cloth, and various other articles of daily consumption; and by extending the navigation of the River Stort, these benefits are more widely dispersed through the country.


6 Geo. I. C. 28, R. A. 7th April, 1720.

10 Geo. III. C. 114, R. A. 19th May, 1770.

23 Geo. III. C. 47, R. A. 24th June, 1783.

30 Geo. III. C. 65, R. A. 9th June, 1790.

34 Geo. III. C. 94, R. A. 9th May, 1794.

59 Geo. III. C. 105, R. A. 21st June, 1819.

A navigation between the east and west seas, by the Rivers Aire and Ribble, had been deemed practicable by several public spirited gentlemen, residents in the counties of York and Lancaster, who at various times had endeavoured to draw the public attention to the scheme. But while this was in contemplation, the Duke of Bridgewater formed a plan of making a navigable canal from Worsley Mill to Manchester, which was soon afterwards executed with great ability and amazing rapidity.

The Duke's success drew forth the attention of Mr. Longbotham, a native of Halifax, who, after inspecting and examining the works on the Duke's Canal, projected the scheme of making a similar canal from Leeds to Liverpool, and for this purpose he took an actual survey of the country between those two places, laid down a plan and prepared an estimate of the expense, which

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he produced at sundry meetings of gentlemen and land-owners interested in promoting the scheme. It was unanimously resolved, in order to put it beyond a doubt, whether it was practicable or not, to call Mr. Brindley, to re-survey the line laid down by Mr. Longbotham; and after surveying by himself, and Mr. Whitworth, (who was engaged with him) he reported to two numerous meetings, one held at Bradford on the 5th and the other at Liverpool on the 9th of December, 1768, that it was very practicable, and might be executed for the total sum of £259,777, which he stated in detail. The canal, according to the plan and estimate, was one hundred and eight miles and three quarters in length, 42 feet wide at the top, 27 feet at the bottom, and 5 feet deep.

This canal, as its name implies, proceeds from Leeds to Liverpool, and is the most extensive of any in the kingdom. At that era of canal navigation, when first commenced, it was one of the boldest and most magnificent projects hitherto attempted in Great Britain.

The act of the 10th George III. is entitled, 'An Act for making and maintaining a navigable Cut or Canal from Leeds Bridge, in the county of York, to the North Lady's Walk in Liverpool, in the county palatine of Lancaster, and from thence to the River Mersey.'

In describing the line of this canal, we shall confine ourselves to the course of country through which it has been actually executed; and afterwards mention a few of the places through which it was projected by the original line. Commencing at Leeds Bridge, where the jurisdiction of the Aire and Calder Navigation terminates, and where the two navigations unite, it proceeds twenty-seven chains in the River Aire, to the first lock on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, where the extensive warehouses, wharfs, basins and docks belonging to this concern are situate; from which circumstance, the lock here may be admitted as the commencement of the canal. From this place its course is north westerly, passing alongside the River Aire by Armley, Kirkstall Bridge, Kirkstall Abbey and Forge, to near New Leeds, whence it makes a detour southerly to Ross Mill; from hence it again takes a north-westerly course, leaving Horsforth on the north and

page 387

Calverley on the south, to Woodhouse, when bending westerly to Apperley Bridge, it then changes its course to the north, leaving Idle to the south and Esholt Hall to the north; thence proceeding westward by Buck Mill to Shipley, where the Bradford Canal branches off; having obtained a rise, from the surface water in the River Aire, at the tail of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal Lock above Leeds Bridge, of 155 feet 7 inches. From the junction with the Bradford Canal, it proceeds westward to New Mill, at which place it crosses the River Aire by an extensive aqueduct, and runs north-westerly to Bingley, where locking up 88 feet 8 inches, it attains a level that continues above eighteen miles, without another lock.

The Great Lock, as it is commonly called, at Bingley, consisting of five rises in one range of gates and masonry, and which unfortunate arrangement requires five locks full of water to pass one vessel from the lower to the higher level, must always cause a great waste of water, till remedied by dividing the fall or side ponds.

From Bingley Great Lock the canal proceeds in a north-westerly direction, passing Rushforth Hall, Riddlesden, within a mile of Keighley, about the same distance from Steeton, close to Silsden; thence to Kildwick, Snaygill and to Skipton. At this place, which is at an elevation of 272½ feet above tile River Aire at Leeds Bridge, a short branch proceeds from the canal to a lime-stone wharf on the north side of Skipton Castle, which branch belongs to the Earl of Thanet. From Skipton the canal runs north-west by Thorleby and Gargrave, and just above the latter place it again crosses the River Aire by another large aqueduct; it then bends south-westerly, passing Bank Newton, Marton, Gillchurch, Greenberfield and Rainhall Pasture, at which point, another branch of a quarter of a mile runs off southward to a limestone quarry called Rainhall Rock; this branch is upon the summit level of the canal, and at an elevation of 411 feet 4 inches above the River Aire at Leeds, which elevation is attained in a distance (from Leeds Bridge to the summit lock at Greenberfield) of forty-one miles. The canal then proceeds by Barnoldswick and Salterford to Foulridge, where the great tunnel commences, whose height is 18 feet, width 17 feet, and the length one thousand six hundred and forty yards. The surface of the ground on the

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highest part over the tunnel, is at an elevation of 60 feet above the water in the tunnel. Within a little distance of the tunnel, are two reservoirs, for the supply of the canal, which cover one hundred and four acres of land, and will contain twelve hundred thousand cubic yards of water. From Foulridge the canal proceeds to near Barrowford, where it locks down from the summit 70 feet towards Liverpool; crosses Colne Water by an aqueduct; passes near Carr Hall (a seat of Colonel Clayton's) and Dancer House to the town of Burnley, which it circumscribes on three sides, and at which place an embankment has been carried for one thousand two hundred and fifty-six yards in length, at above 60 feet high, and aqueducts made over the Rivers Brown and Calder, and a road aqueduct under the canal; thence the canal proceeds to near Gannah, where there is another tunnel five hundred and fifty-nine yards in length; thence by Hapton, Altham, Clayton Hall, Henfield, to Church Valley, whence Messrs. Peels' short branch runs to their print works at Church; now crossing the River Henburn by an aqueduct, the main line proceeds past Rushton and White Birch to the town of Blackburn, sweeping on the south side of this town to a place called Grimshaw Park, where by six locks there is a fall of 54 feet 3 inches; thence passing over Derwent Water by an aqueduct, it runs by Livesey Hall, and passing Roddlesworth Water by another aqueduct, proceeds to near Chorley; thence to Cophurst Valley, and here locking down 64 feet 6 inches by seven locks into the head level of the Lancaster Canal, at Johnson's Hillock. At this part of the line there is an interval of eleven miles of the Lancaster Canal upon one level, when the Leeds and Liverpool Canal again commences near Kirklees, at the head of a range of twenty-three locks, which brings the canal down 214 feet 6 inches from the level of the Lancaster Canal to the basin at Wigan. Here it may be observed, that the basin at Wigan is situate upon that part of the canal made under the powers of the River Douglas Navigation Act. From this basin to Newburgh constitutes the Upper Douglas Navigation, a distance of seven miles, in which there is a fall to Newburgh of 30 feet.

In this last-mentioned distance the principal part of the coal carried by the Leeds and Liverpool Canal to Liverpool, is put on board the vessels; as also the coal sent down to the Ribble. Com-

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mencing at Newburgh and tracing the canal to Liverpool, it has been executed according to the original plan and act. There it has a stretch of twenty-eight miles and a half upon the same level, passing Brier's Mill, Burscough, Scaresbrick, Halsall, Downholland, Lidiate, Mayhull, over the Alt River, Litherland, Bootle, Bankhall, Vauxhall, the Gaol, and to the basin of this canal at the North Lady's Walk in Liverpool, being a distance from Leeds Bridge of one hundred and twenty-seven miles and thirteen chains, and containing a lockage of 844 feet 7½ inches; that is from Leeds to the summit, a rise of 411 feet 4½ inches; and from the summit to the basin at Liverpool a fall of 433 feet 3 inches.

Hence it appears that the basin at Liverpool is 21 feet 10½ inches below the level of the River Aire at Leeds; and the canal basin at Liverpool is 56 feet above low-water-mark in the River Mersey.

At three miles from Newburgh, is the junction of the line of the Lower Douglas Navigation with the Leeds and Liverpool Canal; the Douglas Navigation locks into the tideway at the tail of Tarleton Cut, from whence to the Ribble is two miles and a half, and from the union with the Ribble is six miles and a half to the custom house at Preston.

As the act for making the Douglas Navigation stands in priority of date to that for making the canal from Leeds to Liverpool, we shall here recite it. It was obtained in the 6th George I. and is entitled, 'An Act for making the River Douglas, alias Asland, navigable, from the River Ribble to Wigan, in the county palatine of Lancaster;' wherein it is stated, that the making of this river navigable from the River Ribble to a place called Mirey Lane End, in the township of Wigan, will be very beneficial to trade, advantageous to the poor, and convenient for the carriage of coals, cannel, stone, slate, and other goods and merchandize. The only proprietors were William Squire, Esq. and Thomas Steeres, Gentleman, both of Liverpool, who were by the act nominated and appointed undertakers to make the said River Douglas, alias Asland, navigable; and they and their heirs and assigns have power to charge for goods conveyed thereon, the following tonnage rates.

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For Coal, Cannel, Slate, Stone, or other Goods, Wares, Merchandize or Commodities, from the River Ribble to the Town of Wigan, or vice versa, or any intermediate Distance 2s 6d per Ton.

And so in Proportion for a greater or lesser Weight.

But no Rates shall be charged to the Land-owners within Five Miles of the said River, upon Manure for Land only.

The next act respecting the Douglas Navigation is that of the 23rd George III. and is entitled, 'An Act for altering and varying the Powers of an Act, passed in the Sixth Year of the Reign of King George the First, for making the River Douglas, alias Asland, navigable, from the River Ribble, to Wigan, in the county palatine of Lancaster; and for enabling the Company of Proprietors of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, incorporated by an Act passed in the Tenth Year of his present Majesty's Reign, to purchase the said River Navigation; for amending the said last-mentioned Act; for incorporating and consolidating the said two Navigations; and for other Purposes.' By this act, as its title imports, the Douglas Navigation became incorporated with the Leeds ;and Liverpool Canal; which company, in January, 1772, purchased twenty-eight shares out of the whole thirty-six shares of the Douglas Navigation, and they now have the power to purchase the remaining eight shares. They had already made the connecting branch with the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, a length of three miles and a half, with 12 feet lockage; but, upon becoming possessed of the remainder of this property, which took place in 1780, they extended the canal, and altogether abandoned the river from Wigan to the low end of Tarleton Cut, which, out of a distance of sixteen miles and three quarters, leaves only two miles and a half of river navigation, and that in the tideway. The Leeds and Liverpool Canal Company had a power to make a call of £14 per share upon their proprietors, for the purpose of purchasing the Douglas Navigation and improving the same. And by the time they had finished all the improvements, it had cost altogether about £74,000.

The length from Wigan to Newburgh (now made the line of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, as stated before) is seven miles, and has a fall of 30 feet; this part is usually called the Upper Douglas. From Burscough to the Ribble is nine miles and a half, and has a fall of 42 feet; this is called the Lower Douglas Navigation.

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Now recurring back to the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, the first act relating thereto passed in the 10th George III. as stated above, and the number of subscribers when the act was obtained, amounted to five hundred and twenty-nine, (amongst whom appears only one nobleman, the Earl of Thanet) who are incorporated by the name of "The Company of Proprietors of the Canal Navigation from Leeds to Liverpool." Under this act the company were empowered to raise the sum of £260,000, to be divided into two thousand six hundred shares of £100 each, and the said shares to be deemed personal estate; and in case the above sum be found insufficient, the company may raise the additional sum of £60,000 in the same manner. The act authorizes the proprietors to receive five per cent, interest upon the sums advanced during the execution of the canal. Proprietors to have a vote for every share; but not to vote by proxy for more than fifty shares.

The estimate for this canal, as before stated, was made by the celebrated Mr. Brindley, and amounted to only £259,777; but as he could not attend to the execution thereof, it was put under the direction of Mr. Longbotham, who completed in less than seven years, (commencing July, 1770,) that part from Leeds to a place called Holmbridge, near Gargrave, on the Yorkshire side, a distance of thirty-three miles and a half, at a cost of £175,000; and from Liverpool to Newburgh, on the Lancashire side, twenty-eight miles, at an expense of £125,000. The canal was opened for trade from Liverpool to Newburgh in 1775, and from Leeds to Holmbridge on the 4th June, 1777. At that time it appears this company had expended in the works and in purchasing the Douglas Navigation, the whole of the money they had a power to raise; and therefore applied for another act in the 30th year of George III. for authority to raise more money and to vary the line; which act is entitled, 'An Act to enable the Company of Proprietors of the Canal Navigation from Leeds to Liverpool, to vary the Line of the said Canal Navigation; and to raise a further Sum of Money for the Purpose of completing the said Canal Navigation; and for other Purposes.' This act enables the company to vary the original line of canal commencing at a place called Lomishay in the township of Marsden, through the several

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parishes and places called Marsden, Pendle Forest, Ighten Hill Park, Gawthrop, Padiham, Hapton, Altham, Clayton and Harwood, in the county of Lancaster, to a place called Nut or Banks Wood, there to communicate again, with the original line. Under this act the company were authorized to borrow the further sum of £200,000 on the credit of the said canal and of that of the River Douglas Navigation, by assigning over the tolls, rates or duties; the interest on which to be paid in preference to any dividend.

There yet remained the most difficult and most expensive part of this canal to execute: and after an interval of near thirteen years, the company, on resuming the prosecution of the work, appointed Mr. R. Whitworth their engineer, under whose direction it recommenced at Holmbridge in the year 1790. He re-surveyed the whole line and made an estimate for completing the same amounting to £169,817, 15s. 5d.; he also recommended various improvements, the most important of which was to make a tunnel at the summit level near Foulridge, in lieu of following the original plan, by which a head level of above six miles in length was obtained instead of one mile; he also made this part of the canal 2 feet extra depth, which answers the purpose of a reservoir in dry seasons. The work from Holmbridge to Wanlass Banks, near Barrowford, a distance of fourteen miles, in which are 208 feet of lockage, cost £210,000, including £40,000 the expense of the tunnel at Foulridge.

At this period the trade of Lancashire had become so important as to induce the proprietors of this canal to turn their attention to the accommodation of the established manufactories; for which purpose they abandoned the idea of pursuing their original scheme of connecting the east and west sides of the island by the shortest route, and directed their engineer to take a survey through a new line of country which would embrace both the coal and manufacturing districts.

Hence the company, in 1794, again applied to parliament for power to make the proposed deviation in the line of their canal, and obtained an act, entitled, 'An Act to enable the Company of Proprietors of the Canal Navigation from Leeds to Liverpool, to complete the said Navigation, and to vary the Line thereof, and to raise a further Sum of Money for those Purposes; and to make

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'a navigable Branch, therein described, from the intended new Line of the said Canal.' The branch above-mentioned was intended to have been cut into Ighten Hill Park, near Burnley, for the purpose of opening a valuable bed of coal; but this has not been done. By this act several land-owners have a power to cut side branches in their own estates, subject to certain restrictions. They have also the power to make railways within one thousand yards of the canal.

The company is authorized to borrow, or raise amongst themselves, or by the admission of new subscribers, the further sum of £280,000, which is to be applied in paying off £101,394, being part of the £200,000 borrowed under the powers of the 39th George III. and in completing and finishing the said canal. They are also restricted by this act from taking more than twenty-six yards in breadth for the canal and towing-path, except in certain cases.

The works were now prosecuted with great vigour, and in May, 1796, the canal was opened for trade from the east end of the Foulridge Tunnel to Burnley, a distance of eight miles, in which space there is a lockage westwards of 70 feet. Again in April, 1801, the canal was opened for trade from Burnley to Henfield Warehouse, a distance of nine miles and thirty-seven chains, and level. In this seventeen miles and a half, from Foulridge to Henfield, is embraced the most expensive, as well as the most difficult work on the whole navigation, having cost no less than £120,000; but this sum includes for extraordinaries £40,000 for the tunnel at Foulridge; £9,000 for reservoirs there; £22,000 for an embankment at Burnley; and £10,000 for another tunnel of five hundred and fifty-nine yards in length, at a place called Ridge near the last-mentioned town.

During the succeeding nine years the execution of the canal proceeded slowly, but in June, 1810, another stretch of eight miles upon the same level, that is, from Henfield to Blackburn, was opened for trade. This last work and the remainder of the canal from Blackburn to Wigan was executed under the direction of Mr. J. Fletcher. And lastly, having completed the remainder of the canal, it was opened for trade in October, 1816, between Blackburn and Wigan, when vessels could then proceed direct from Leeds to Liverpool.

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Here it may be observed, that this company abandoned their own line of canal for the space of eleven miles, and locked down 64 feet 6 inches at Cophurst, into the head level of the Lancaster Canal; consequently, every vessel going through the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, must pass eleven miles along the Lancaster Canal, that is, from Cophurst or Johnson's Hillock to Kirklees. To establish this junction, an agreement between the two companies was entered into, stipulating that such junction should be made, and the same was confirmed by an act obtained by the Lancaster Canal Company in the 59th George III.

This gigantic concern, which was no less than forty-six years in executing, and which has cost £1,200,000, has proved highly beneficial to the country through which it passes, giving facility to the transport of coal, limestone, lime for manure, and all agricultural produce, connecting the trade of Leeds with Liverpool and with Manchester, Wigan, Blackburn, Burnley, Colne, Skipton, Keighley, Bingley and Bradford; and by opening a communication between the eastern and western sides of the island, which in a great measure was the original object of the first promoters, now bids fair to remunerate the proprietors for their risk and patient endurance through a long and difficult struggle, having had to borrow above £400,000, at a time when the public funds were very low.

Although they only applied for tolls to remunerate them upon the original estimate made by Mr. Brindley, those rates have never been increased, and now stand the same as by the first act of 10th George III. which empowered them to take the following


For Clay, Brick or Stones ½d per Ton, per Mile.
For Coal or Lime 1d ditto. ditto.
For Timber, Goods, Wares, Merchandize or other Commodities 1½d ditto. ditto.
For Soap Ashes, Salt, Salt Scrow, Foul Salt and Grey Salt, Pigeon Dung, Rape or Cole Seed; Dust, Rage or Tanners' Bark to be used for manuring Lands of any Person whose Lands shall be cut through, lying in the Township through which the Canal passes ¼d ditto. ditto.

All small Rubbish, Waste Stones from Quarries, Gravel and Sand employed for repairing Roads, not being Turnpike, if not carried more than Five Miles; also all Dung, Soil, Marl, Ashes of Coal and Turf for the Improvement of Lands belonging to Persons through whose Lands the Canal passes, but not to pass any Lock unless the Water flows over the Gauge, Paddle, or Niche of such Lock, are exempt from Toll.

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Fifty Feet of Round, or Forty Feet of Square Oak, Ash or Elm Timber, or Fifty Feet of Fir or Deal, Balk, Poplar and other Timber Wood, to be deemed One Ton Weight; and the Ton of Coals and Lime-stone to be Twenty-two Hundreds of One Hundred and Twelve Pounds each.

Lords of manors or land-owners have a power to erect wharfs, warehouses, &c. upon their lands; and if such lords of manors or owners of land shall not do so within twelve months after notice given them by the company, then the company may erect the same.


For Coals, Stone or Brick, not longer than Six Days 1½d per Ton.
For Goods or Merchandize, ditto 3d ditto.

No Charge whatever if the Articles do not lie longer than Six Hours.

Fractions of a Mile to be reckoned as a Mile. Fractions of a Ton as the Quarters of a Ton, and of a Quarter as a Quarter.

Every Vessel passing the Leeds Lock, to pay the Tonnage of Eight Miles.

When the Canal shall communicate with the Douglas Navigation at or near the Warehouses in Wigan, the Coals, Stones, Timber, Goods, Wares and Merchandize passing upon any Part of it, shall be charged no more than if the same had been carried the like Distance on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

The Leeds and Liverpool Canal Company having finished their main line of navigation in the year 1816, they now turned their attention to forming a communication with the town of Manchester, a subject which had engaged their consideration prior to the death of the late Duke of Bridgewater; and for this purpose they again applied to parliament and obtained an act, entitled, 'An Act to enable the Company of Proprietors of the Canal Navigation from Leeds to Liverpool, to make a navigable Cut, and also a collateral Branch or Railway, from their said Canal at Hennis Bridge near Wigan, to join the Duke of Bridgewater's Canal at Leigh, all in the county palatine of Lancaster, and to amend the several Acts relating to the said Leeds and Liverpool Canal, so far as relates to certain Powers, therein given to the late Duke of Bridgewater.' This branch proceeds from the main line of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, at a point half a mile from the basin at Wigan, southward to Brin Moss, then easterly, passing between Platt Bridge and Bamferlong Hall, intersecting Hindley Brook, and passing Strangwood, West Leigh House, and terminates in that part of the Duke of Bridgewater's Canal which extends from

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Manchester to Leigh, at the south end of the town of Leigh, being a distance of six miles, seven furlongs and twenty-one poles, and with a lockage down to the Duke's Canal of 15 feet 2 inches, by two locks. At the road leading from Ashton to Platt Bridge, the side cut or railway branches off nearly north for about a mile in length. By this branch another communication by water is made between Liverpool and Manchester; it also affords the first communication which had ever been made to connect Kendal, Lancaster and Preston, with Manchester, Rochdale and other trading towns in that part of the country. In the execution of this branch, which was completed by the end of the year 1821, above £50,000 was expended. The tonnage rates are the same as upon the main line of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, excepting the side cut or railway, which shall not exceed 4d. per ton for any article what ever; and the fractions of tons and miles to be reckoned as on the Leeds and Liverpool Main Line; but the devisees of the late Duke of Bridgewater have authority by this act to charge and receive for articles passing into or out of the said Leigh Branch, as under.


For every Article, except Flags 1s 2d per Ton.
For Flags 0s 2d ditto.

Fractions of a Quarter of a Ton to be paid for as a Quarter of a Ton.

These Rates shall exempt the above-named Articles from any Charge at the Castlefleld Lock, situate upon the Rochdale Canal in the Town of Manchester.

The reservation clause in the Leeds and Liverpool Canal Acts, and in those for making the River Douglas navigable, which restrained any boat or vessel from passing locks, without tonnage was paid for a burthen of twenty tons, is by this act repealed; and in lieu thereof, it is enacted, that empty boats or vessels shall each pay at the first lock they shall arrive at, the sum of five shillings only; provided also, that every empty boat or vessel passing through or returning out of the summit level upon the line of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, either through the Greenberfield Lock on the Yorkshire side, or through the Barrowford Lock on the Lancashire side of the said summit level, shall pay a further sum of five shillings.

By this act for making the Leigh Branch the company obtained power to raise £50,000, either by admission of new subscribers, or

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by contributing amongst themselves in such manner as they may direct, or by mortgage of the navigations, cuts and works, conformably to any order of a general assembly of the said proprietors, where there shall be present, as principals or proxies, the holders of not less than twelve hundred shares in the said navigation. It may be observed, that when the first parts of the canal opened for business, the interest ceased on the money advanced for calls, which was made stock, thereby causing an original share to amount, on the 1st of January, 1779, to £139, 8s. 9d.

Upon inspection of the map, it will appear that this canal connects the Irish Sea with the German Ocean, and the great ports of Liverpool and Hull, by which a cheap and ready transit is afforded to the Foreign Trade to and from the Baltic, Holland, Hanseatic Towns, the Netherlands, France and Germany; also with Ireland, the West Indies and America. Besides, the public are greatly benefited by the ease with which the interior trade is carried from Leeds and the West Riding into the manufacturing districts of Lancashire and to Liverpool, and vice versa. Moreover, upon the banks of this canal are found immense quantities of stone for paving and building, limestone for repairs of roads and for burning into lime for manure; inexhaustible beds of coal, which not only supply the neighbouring districts, but furnish an abundance for exportation at Liverpool; in short no part of the kingdom is more benefited by a public work of this kind than the country, through which the Leeds and Liverpool Canal passes.


11 George IV, Cap. 59, Royal Assent 29th May, 1830.

THIS railway commences from the east side of Marsh Lane, in Leeds, and immediately enters a tunnel, eight hundred yards in length, to be made through a hill the apex of which is 72 feet above the base of the railway. Its course is eastwardly, approaching the Waterloo Colliery, and passing the Osmanthorp Colliery to Halton Dial; thence by Cross Gates, the villages of Moor Garforth and Church Garforth, Newthorp and South Milford; and thence in nearly a straight line to the town of Selby, where it

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terminates at the banks of the Ouse, about two hundred and forty yards south of the bridge, and about three hundred and thirty north of the place where the Selby Canal locks down into that river.

Its total length is nineteen miles and seven furlongs. Its commencement is at a point 38 feet 8 inches above the level of the surface water of the River Aire at Far Bank Ferry, from whence there is a gradual rise of 63 feet 4 inches in the first length of two miles, two furlongs and six chains; and in the next two miles, one furlong and nine chains there is a further rise of 76 feet; thence to its greatest elevation at the seven mile point, it is nearly level, there being in this length a rise of only 7 feet 6 inches.

From thence the railway descends, in one regular plane, 232 feet in a distance of six miles, four furlongs and six chains; and in the remainder of the railway there is a further descent of 10 feet only, although it is six miles, two furlongs and four chains to its termination.

When this railway was first projected, Mr. Stephenson was employed to lay out the line; but previous to an application to parliament, James Walker, Esq. F.R.S. L.&E. was consulted, who designed the present course, and estimated its cost at £200,000, and of this sum £177,000 was subscribed at the time the bill was brought into parliament, though it is required that the whole sum shall be subscribed before any of the provisions of the act are put in execution.

The act received the royal sanction on the 29th May, 1830, and is entitled, 'An Act for making a Railway from the town of Leeds to the River Ouse, within the parish of Selby, in the West Riding of the county of York.' The act was obtained by a company consisting of one hundred and five persons, amongst whom we find the Earl of Mexborough, Lord Reay and the Honorable E. R. Petre, who were incorporated by the name of "The Leeds and Selby Railway Company," with power to raise amongst themselves the sum of £210,000, in two thousand one hundred shares of £100 each; and should not this prove sufficient, they may borrow, on mortgage of the undertaking, the further sum of £90,0O0.

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For Lime to be used as Manure, Dung, Compost or other Manure, and for Materials for the repair of Roads 1d per Ton, per Mile.
For Coal, Lime, Lime-stone to be used otherwise than as Manure, Coke, Culm, Charcoal, Cinders, Stone, Sand, Clay, Fuller's-earth, Building, Pitching and Paving-stones, Flags, Bricks, Tiles and Slates, Pig-lead, and Pig and Old Iron 1½d ditto. ditto.
For Sugar, Corn, Grain, Flour, Dye Woods, Timber, Staves, Deals, Lead, Bar-iron, and other Metals 2½d ditto. ditto.
For Cotton and other Wool, Hides, Drugs, Manufactured Goods and for all other Wares, Merchandise, Articles, Matters and Things 3d ditto. ditto.

Where the Rates do not amount to Sixpence per Ton, by reason of passing a short Distance only, the Proprietors have authority to demand it.


For every Person passing in or upon any Carriage for any Distance not exceeding Five Miles 0s 6d.
For ditto not exceeding Ten Miles 1s 0d.
For ditto exceeding Ten Miles 1s 6d.
For every Horse, Mule, Ass or other Beast of Draught or Burthen, and for every Ox, Cow, Bull or Neat Cattle, carried in or upon such Carriage for any Distance not exceeding Five Miles 0s 9d.
For ditto not exceeding Ten Miles 1s 6d.
For ditto exceeding Ten Miles 2s 6d.
For every Calf, Sheep, Lamb or Pig carried on the same any Distance 0s 6d.

Fractions to be taken as for a Quarter of a Mile and Quarter of a Ton.


For Lime, Lime-stone, Dung, Compost and other Manure, and for Materials for the repair of Roads, Stone, Sand, Clay, Building, Pitcthing and Paving-stones, Tiles, Slates, Timber, Staves and Deals 6s 0d per Ton.
For Sugar, Corn, Grain, Flour, Dye Woods, Lead, Iron and other Metals 7s 0d ditto.
For Cotton and other wool, Hides, Drugs, Groceries, and Manufactured Goods 8s 0d ditto.
For Hops, Tea, Wines, Spirits, Vitriol, Glass and other hazardous Goods 10s 6d ditto.

And for any Distance short of the whole Length of the Railway, a rateable Proportion of such several Sums, according to the Distance.
For Coal, Coke, Culm, Charcoal and Cinders 2½d per Ton, per Mile.

For Persons, Cattle and other Animals, such reasonable Charge as shall from Time to Time he determined by the Company.
Company not compelled to receive less for short Distances than 9d per Ton, per Mile.

For the Carriage of small Parcels not exceeding Five Hundred Pounds Weight, the Company have power to fix the Charge at any general Meeting.

For aseertaining the Weight of Tonnage, One Hundred and Twelve Pounds is deemed a Hundred Weight, and Twenty Hundred Weight a Ton; Fourteen Cubic Feet of Stone, Forty Cubic Feet of Oak, Mahogany, Beech and Ash, and Fifty Cubic Feet of all other Timber, shall be deemed a Ton Weight.

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The act allows five years for the completion of the railway, and if not then made, the powers of the act are to cease, except as to such part as may have been executed.

The proposed object of this railway is to facilitate the transit of merchandize in general, by opening a more expeditious line of conveyance between Leeds and the port of Hull, and vice versa.


31 George III. Cap. 65, Royal Assent 13th May, 1791.

37 George III. Cap. 51, Royal Assent 3rd May, 1797.

THE first parliamentary sanction of this useful work was obtained in 1791, under tile title of 'An Act for making and maintaining a navigable Communication between the Loughborough Canal and the town of Leicester, and for making and maintaining a Communication by Railways or Stone Roads, and Water Levels, from several Places and Mines to the said Loughborough Canal, and for continuing the same, by passing along the said Canal, to the said Navigation, commencing all in the county of Leicester.' By this act the proprietors, who are incorporated as "The Company of Proprietors of the Leicester Navigation," have authority to make a navigable canal, from the basin of the Loughborough Canal on the north of the town of that name to the River Soar at Quorndon Village; from this point they are empowered to make the Rivers Soar and Wreak navigable, and to cut such branches and deviations therefrom as may render the water communication, between Loughborough and Leicester, most convenient. The canal and improvements have consequently been made, and the navigation is complete, uniting, as before-mentioned, with the Loughborough Canal at that town, and joining the Soar at the West Bridge in Leicester. There are other branches, railroads and water levels connected with the work, which will be mentioned below. For executing the powers invested in them, the proprietors were authorized to raise the sum of £46,000 in shares, and an additional sum of £20,000 should the former prove insufficient. For paying interest and other current expenses they were also empowered to collect the following rates.

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For all Coal conveyed from Loughborough to Leicester 1s 2d per Ton.
For ditto any shorter Distance 0s 1d ditto, per Mile.
For ditto passing to the River Wreak for Mellon Mowbray 0s 7d per Ton.
For alt Timber, Iron, &c. from Loughborough to Leicester 2s 6d ditto.
For ditto any shorter Distance 0s 2d ditto, per Mile.
For ditto passing to the River Wreak and Melton Mowbray 1s 3d per Ton.
For all Coal conveyed on the Railroads and Water Levels from the several Places to Loughborough 0s 1d ditto, per Mile.
For Lime and Lime-stone on the Railroads 0s l½d ditto. ditto.
For ditto on the Water Levels 0s 0¾d ditto. ditto.

For all Lime, Lime-stone, Stones for Building and Materials for making or repairing Roads, Half the above Tolls.

The tolls may be lowered, if circumstances permit, and in that case such goods as pass along this line to the Melton Mowbray Navigation or Branch, which will be noticed in its place, are not to pay more than half the regulated tolls.

The proprietors having not only expended the sums directed to be raised under this act, but also contracted a debt of £14,000 without completing the work; they made another application to parliament and obtained a second act in 1797, entitled, 'An Act for enabling the Company of Proprietors of the Leicester Navigation to finish and complete their several Works, and to discharge the Debts contracted in the making thereof, and for amending an Act passed in the Thirty-first of his present Majesty,for making the said Navigation, and several other Works, in such Act mentioned.' By this second act they are enabled to raise a further sum of £18,000, by an additional call on the shareholders, or by mortgage or annuities as may seem best; and as it appears that some of the proprietors had voluntarily advanced £5 per share for the purpose of making a reservoir on Charnwood Forest, it is provided by this act that such advance shall be accounted as part of their calls for raising the additional sum of £18,000; and if it should be deemed expedient not to call for an advance on the original shares, but to borrow the £18,000, then the £5 per share advanced by the proprietors as above shall be repaid them. The company are also to collect the following


For all Coals carried from the Loughborough Canal to Lady Bridge or West Bridge, Leicester 6d per Ton.
For ditto a less Distance between the same ½d ditto, per Mile.
For ditto when navigated from the Loughborough Canal to the Junction of the Wreak and Soar and along the Wreak and on the Navigation to Melton Mowbray 3d per Ton.

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Jim Shead Waterways Photographer & Writer
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