SJ5759 : Bunbury Locks

taken 8 years ago, near to Alpraham, Cheshire, Great Britain

This is 1 of 5 images, with title Bunbury Locks in this square
Bunbury Locks
Bunbury Locks
At Bunbury the Shropshire Union Canal passes through two staircase locks; here a narrowboat is passing from the upper to the lower chamber.
The Shropshire Union Canal

The Shropshire Union Canal (from Autherley to Nantwich) was engineered by Thomas Telford and opened in 1835. There are long straight sections of this canal which required either embankments or cuttings to avoid the need for locks. Although this was a more difficult procedure, the end route was shorter and the progress for horse drawn working boats could be maintained with (hopefully) no stoppages. The canal (formerly the Birmingham and Liverpool Junction Canal) was opened at a time when railways were making serious inroads into the canal companies' businesses.

The current Shroppie north of Nantwich was formerly the Chester Canal, opened in 1779, and has wider locks and bridges. Boats up to nine feet in beam can still navigate this section; Telford's canal accommodates only narrowboats up to seven feet in beam.

Staircase locks

In a staircase the upper gate of one lock is also the lower gate of the one above it. Operating a staircase is very different from operating a flight. It can be more useful to think of a staircase as a single lock with intermediate levels. As there is no intermediate pound, a chamber can only be filled by emptying the one above, or emptied by filling the one below; thus the whole staircase has to be full of water (except for the bottom chamber) before a boat starts to ascend, or empty (except for the top chamber) before a boat starts to descend. In an apparent staircase the chambers still have common gates, but the water does not pass directly from one chamber to the next, going instead via side ponds. This means it is not necessary to ensure that the flight is full or empty before starting. Examples of real staircases are Bingley and Grindley Brook. Examples of apparent staircase locks are Foxton Locks and Watford Locks on the Leicester Branch of the Grand Union.

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SJ5759, 44 images   (more nearby search)
Photographer
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Date Taken
Sunday, 8 September, 2013   (more nearby)
Submitted
Sunday, 15 September, 2013
Geographical Context
Canals 
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SJ 5777 5905 [10m precision]
WGS84: 53:7.6160N 2:37.9532W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SJ 5779 5903
View Direction
Northwest (about 315 degrees)
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Other Tags
Lock  Staircase Locks  Canal Bridge 

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