Tramway Bridge At Bugsworth Basin Wharf – Buxworth, UK
Posted by: Groundspeak Premium Member dtrebilc
N 53° 20.129 W 001° 58.138
30U E 568654 N 5910087
Quick Description: This stone bridge carried tramway wagons over a canal wharf next to a small side arm of the canal at Bugsworth Basin, the interchange between the canal and The Peak Forest Tramway.
Location: East Midlands, United Kingdom
Date Posted: 6/29/2014 6:34:02 AM
Waymark Code: WMM0WG
Published By: Groundspeak Premium Member 8Nuts MotherGoose
Views: 1

Long Description:

Bugsworth Basin
The 18th Century had seen the development of the canal network in the UK to carry heavy goods, and led to towns such as Manchester become the first large industrial towns.

There was a demand for limestone and grit stone from the nearby quarries to be transported to Manchester and beyond and so the Peak Forest Canal was built with a connection to the Ashton Canal at Ashton-Under-Lyne.

The canal had a series of 16 locks to lift the canal a height of 209 feet from Ashton-Under-Lyne to this point, but the final rise to the quarries was too high for a canal. So a horse drawn tramway was built to form a connection between the canal junction here and the quarries themselves.

Much of the output from the quarries was loaded directly onto the canal boats but there was also a total of 19 lime kilns on this site to process the limestone into quick lime.

The wagons from the tramway took the limestone at a high level to the top of the kilns. After processing the processed quick lime was extracted from the bottom of the kiln and loaded onto the canal boats. A model of the site and information panel on the other side of the canal describe the operation of the site.

The site operated between 1796 until the 1920s. The canal and this basin was closed down and allowed to become derelict. However in the 1960s and 1970s leisure boating became popular and many canals were renovated and re-opened for leisure purposes.

Most of the Peak Forest Canal reopened 1974 and at that time terminated at Whaley Bridge. The remainder of the canal and this basin was reopened in 1999. However a major leak from the canal needed further renovation and it didn’t fully re-open until 2003. The basin is now protected as Scheduled Ancient Monument number 242 under the Ancient Monuments and Archaeological Areas Act 1979.

Bridge 60A
A small side arm from the middle basin led to a lime shed where lime processed by some of the lime kilns was stored prior to loading onto boats. In order that the wagons from the tramway could reach the lower basin an elevated embankment carried the tramway over this arm.

However the number of people and horses that needed to move around the site was too many to have only a simple tow path alongside the canal arm. This bridge was built over the wharf to provide plenty of room for the access. The horses were unhitched from the boats which were then poled through the boat bridge.
Original Use: Railroad

Date Built: 1796

Construction: Stone

Condition: Good

See this website for more information: [Web Link]

Date Abandoned: 1925

Bridge Status - Orphaned or Adopted.: Adopted

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