On my way to Hothorpe Hall in Leicestershire today I made a slight detour to visit Foxton Locks [foxtonlocks.com]. This staircase of ten locks on the Grand Union Canal is a very imposing sight. By the time I got there all boating activity had finished for the day but I was still able to walk the length of the chain and managed to capture at least some of this feat of Victorian engineering. There is also the remains of an inclined plane boat lift adjacent to the canal which, between 1900 and 1910, offered an alternative route up the hill for boats which were too wide to fit in the narrow lock chambers. It??s hoped that in time the lift will be restored to use. Until then narrow boats have to negotiate their way through all the locks, something that takes a minimum of 45 minutes, even when the canal is quiet. Bearing in mind the increase in altitude covered by the locks is only 75 feet that??s got to be one of the slowest forms of transport in the world!
May 25, 2017