Tuesday, 5 October 2021

Walking the waterways (27) : Gloucester and Sharpness Canal

The Gloucester & Sharpness Canal links to the river Severn at Gloucester and acts as a shortcut to the Severn before it rejoins the river 26.5km away at Sharpness. Work began on the canal in 1793 though the project ran into financial difficulties in the early 1800s with work stopping for some time. Finally, with funding secured from a variety of sources, the canal was completed and opened in 1827. The canal was, at the time, the broadest and deepest in the world.

The canal was a success, carrying over a million tons of cargo in 1905. Commercial traffic continued on the canal until mostly petering out by the 1980s, the oil trade being a major source of income during much of the 20th century. Now the major source of traffic on the canal is leisure of course.