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Herefordshire Hopes

Canals That Never Were: NarrowBoat, Spring 2016

Richard Dean

Richard Dean looks at the western end of the unfinished Leominster Canal.

In December 1796 the Hereford Journal reported that the Leominster Canal had been fully opened from the collieries at Mamble to Leominster, and 14 ‘barges’ of coal had arrived there on the opening day. The wharf at Leominster was initially a temporary affair, adjoining the main road a mile outside the town, but by default it became a permanent feature as the planned continuation of the canal faltered. When the Leominster Canal had been first promoted there was pressure from a separate group to extend it further into Herefordshire and the resulting Act of 1791 authorised a continuous canal of 45 miles from Kington to the River Severn at Stourport. However, the shares issued were only sufficient to fund the central section, enabling coal to be brought to Leominster. Some work was started on the easterly section (see NB Autumn 2015), and also west of Leominster, but the available money soon ran out. Thomas Dadford’s survey for the 14 miles from Leominster to Kington in…

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