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Bridgewater Canal, Worsley Terminus
Worsley, Greater Manchester
associated engineer
James Brindley
date  10 July 1761
UK era  Georgian  |  category  Canal/Navigation works  |  reference  SD749005
ICE reference number  HEW 976
The Worsley to Manchester section of the Bridgewater Canal represents the earliest segment of the first arterial canal in Britain.
Unlike a lateral canal, which follows the path of a river, an arterial canal crosses valleys, necessitating the use of tunnels, cuttings, aqueducts and embankments.
Brindley conducted his surveys for the Bridgewater Canal in 1759, a year after he had begun similar work on the Grand Trunk (Trent and Mersey) Canal, and an Act of Parliament permitting construction was obtained the same year. The purpose was to transport coal more efficiently from the third Duke of Bridgewater's collieries at Worsley, into Manchester. To do so, the canal crosses the Rivers Irwell, Mersey and Bollin, and the Irwell River crossing was permitted by an amended Act of 1760.
The Worsley terminus provides a drain for 46 miles of underground canals from the collieries, which continue to discolour the water although the pits are now worked out.
The canal opened on 10 July 1761 and extensions continued throughout the next 20 years.
reference sources   LG/SJ

Bridgewater Canal, Worsley Terminus