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Pontcysyllte Basin

Canals that never were: NarrowBoat, Winter 2012

Richard Dean

Richard Dean brings together historical mapping of Pontcysyllte Basin and the Plas Kynaston Branch

On a summer weekend, the canal at Trevor is alive with activity as hire boats come and go, watched by customers at the Telford Inn overlooking the wharf and browsers in the visitor centre. Through the bridge by the inn is a quieter wooded area, with the canal finishing in a stone-lined double basin as the ground starts to rise towards Acrefair and Ruabon. The Ordnance Survey plan of 1872 shown here reveals much about the Shropshire Union’s Ellesmere Canal, and its links to the former industries of the area. The navigable feeder from the River Dee at Llantysilio joins the main canal just north of Pontcysyllte Aqueduct, with the SUC’s double dry dock opposite. Along the south bank of the feeder is a former ironworks, served by a siding from the railway lines on Pontcysyllte Wharf. The main transhipment point from rail to water is at the double basin, with the SUC Railway running down to it from the north on the site of an earlier tramway. Most of this line was sold to the Gr…

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