Guillotine Lock 24E On The Huddersfield Narrow Canal – Slaithwaite, UK
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member dtrebilc
N 53° 37.259 W 001° 53.222
30U E 573614 N 5941929
Quick Description: This lock is the 24th from the start at Huddersfield on the east side of the Standedge Tunnel at the summit.
Location: Yorkshire, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 9/21/2012 11:02:57 AM
Waymark Code: WMFARZ
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member cache_test_dummies
Views: 3

Long Description:

Guillotine Lock 24E
Being a narrow canal the locks on this canal are also narrow, and this reduces the size of the lock gates compared to a broad canal.

This particular lock has quite a rare design for the U.K. Most locks on this canal have a single top gate, and a double set of bottom gates. In this case the bottom gates have been replaced with a single gate that is raised vertically.

This guillotine gate is a modern structure introduced when the canal was restored because a nearby stone bridge had been widened. This had been done because modern mills and warehouses next to the canal at this point needed access for large lorries. The widening of the bridge left no room for the arms that are usually used to operate the gates.

There are a few other guillotine locks in the U.K. but this is the only one on a narrow canal.

The lock wall has a ladder that was added when the canal was restored and provides access from the boat at the bottom of the lock to the top of the lock.

The Huddersfield Narrow Canal
This canal is one of three that crosses the Pennine Hills and built to provide transport between Huddersfield in Yorkshire and Ashton-Under-Lyne in Lancashire.

As the name suggest it is a narrow canal that although was cheaper to build had less carrying capacity compared to the other two broad canals.

Work started on it in 1794 and partly due to the need to construct the longest canal tunnel in the United Kingdom it was completed 17 years later in 1811.
The canal is only 20 miles long and due to the nature of the terrain has 74 locks even though the summit tunnel reduced the required number of locks. The canal climbs 436 feet from Huddersfield and descends 334 feet to Ashton-Under-Lyne.

In theory having a summit tunnel to reduce the number of locks means that the journey times should be relatively short. However the tunnel does not have a tow path and when it was first opened it was necessary to lead the horses over the moor to the other end of the tunnel. Meanwhile it was necessary to leg the boat through the tunnel. This involved specialist workers who lay on their backs and used their legs with their feet against the tunnel wall to leg the boat through.

Competition from the railways led to the closure of the canal in 1944.

During the 1970s leisure boating in the U.K. had become popular and there were various campaigns to re-open canals that had lain derelict for a number of years.

Work on restoring this canal started in 1981 and the whole canal was finally reopened by 2001. These days the canal is only open to leisure boaters and with the re-opening of other connecting canals it is possible to travel far and wide.

However boats are restricted to maximum width of 6 feet 10 inches and a draught of 3 feet 3 inches which does restrict some boats that are used on the broad canals.
Waterway Name: The Huddersfield Narrow Canal

Connected Points:
Links the Huddersfield Broad Canal at Huddersfield in Yorkshire to the Ashton Canal at Ashton-Under-Lyne in Lancashire.


Type: Lock

Date Opened: 1/1/1811

Elevation Difference (meters): 4.00

Site Status: Operational

Web Site: [Web Link]

Date Closed (if applicable): Not listed

Visit Instructions:
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hulletteers visited Guillotine Lock 24E On The Huddersfield Narrow Canal – Slaithwaite, UK 1/5/2013 hulletteers visited it