Northwich Docking

Picturing the Past: NarrowBoat, Spring 2023

An evocative image from the Jack Parkinson collection shows docking underway at Northwich in the early 1960s

A former landmark at Northwich was the shipyard of W.J. Yarwood & Sons Ltd on the banks of the River Weaver. This view shows the repair slip on the sloping bank of the yard basin with screw steamer Agnes on the stocks in 1961. The image was taken from the opposite riverbank with the basin entrance in the foreground. In earlier times there was a footbridge straddling this point. Agnes was built by Yarwood’s in 1913 for Brunner, Mond & Co Ltd, alkali manufacturers of Winnington Works, Northwich (and at Middlewich). Built of steel, it was 96ft 3in long and 21ft 6in wide with a 10ft 7in depth of hold. Its steam compound engine was 28hp and its gross tonnage was 187 tons. It was registered on the Merchant Navy List at Liverpool in 1913. It was one of two vessels built that year for Brunner’s, the first being Madge. Rules of the Canal Boats Acts changed in the 1920s and craft registered as merchant shipping and used on inland waters were also required to be registered u…

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