Thursday, 16 June 2016

In Salford at the end of the Manchester Bolton and Bury Canal, with a story

Looking across to Manchester, May 2014
Now the thing about Andy Robertson’s pictures is that there is always a good story behind them.

He recently was out on the old Manchester Bolton and Bury Canal in Salford just on the border with Manchester and in sending me some fine pictures offered up a sort of challenge.

“Don't know what you know about this abandoned area just east of Water Street and over Princes Bridge which Cathy had discovered  and dragged me round” and that was enough for me.

The Manchester Bolton & Bury Canal in 1830
“The Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal was built between 1797 and 1808 and joined Bolton and Bury with the River Irwell at Middlewood, Salford, serving a number of collieries along the way. 

A feeder canal known as Fletchers Canal linked Wet Earth Colliery in Clifton, now Clifton Country Park to the canal. 

Traffic continued along the canal in Salford until 1950 and it was closed in 1961. 

British Waterways Board owns half the length, and about 40% of the total canal is still in water.”*

The Salford end of the Canal in 1849
And now there is a restoration programme to restore the canal to navigation within the Salford boundaries.

All of which is a work in progress and as ever I am keen to hear stories and receive photographs of the canal when it was still a working water way.

Originally planned as a canal for narrow boats the company adapted the waterway for wider boats when it was decided to connect with the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.

The docks at Salford date from 1808 and linked the canal to the River Irwell.

At the Canal in 2014
There is more but that is for another time.

In the meantime I will return to Andy’s pictures which provide fine views Manchester in the distance with a hint of what once was there.

Pictures; from the collection of Andy Robertson, detail from Bradford’s
 The Inland Navigation of England and Wales, 1830 and the Salford end of Manchester, Bolton and Bury Canal from the 1849 OS for Manchester & Salford, courtesy of Digital Archives Association,

Policy CH7 of the City of Salford Unitary Development Plan

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