Great Britain » Huddersfield Canal, Broad and Narrow Branch | England

The shortest way from Aire & Calder Navigation to Manchester

Huddersfield Canal, Broad and Narrow Branch | England: Characteristics & Overview

Rating of waterway

Length of waterway: 41 km
Number of locks: 83
Lock dimensions: 21.30 x 5.10
Max. depth: 1.00
Max. headroom: 2.10
Degree of difficulty: Some experience is an advantage
Requirements: no rating
Character of waterway: old waterway, to be rediscovered
Profile of waterway: Used by tourists only
Facilities groundside: Sufficiant

Weitere Informationen

Waterway has access to:

Aire and Calder Navigation | England
Ashton Canal & Peak Forest Canal | England

Huddersfield Narrow and Broad Canal, History:
Around 1770, a lot of canals were planned at that time in England, one had the idea of a shorter connection between Manchester and Leeds then the Rochdale Canal, which was already under construction at that time, would be. A rather risky task; not only for the reason of concurrence but also as far as canal construction was concerned.

In 1811, after 17 years, navigation on the canal started but already in 1845, after the railway was built right next to it, it's declension started and in 1944 it was closed.
After considerable renovation work over several years, the canal was finally reopened in 2001.

the canal is very popular; it is the highest up waterway in England and has the longest tunnel. The landscape is hilly, nearly mountained.

Huddersfield Canal Society

Early Days

Formed in 1974, the Society, a registered charity and a company limited by guarantee, campaigned for over 27 years to restore the Huddersfield Narrow Canal to through navigation and public use.
When Society volunteers first surveyed the canal, the whole of the canal corridor had been seriously affected by numerous recessions, leaving pockets of industrial dereliction and decline. All of the 74 lock chambers had been de-gated and landscaped, sections were lost to industrial encroachment, and the majority of bridges would need to be rebuilt. These were only the minor blockages - the canal had been piped and infilled through two town centres and the unique Standedge Tunnel needed substantial repairs.
To prove the feasibility and benefits brought by canal restoration, Society members restored a half mile section of canal between Uppermill and Dobcross in picturesque Saddleworth.
Immediately the benefits to local tourism and associated activity became evident and following a major abolition grant from Greater Manchester County Council in 1985, added impetus was given to the project, leading to the formation of a steering group comprising Kirklees, Oldham and Tameside Councils, British Waterways and the Society.
n the mid 1980's, and unique in the canal world, the Society had its own full time workforce supplemented by various government schemes for the unemployed. This not only increased progress but also credibility.
The Big Push
By 1995 three quarters of the Huddersfield Narrow had been restored. In 1997, following a major grant from the Millennium Commission and English Partnerships, the final £30m and most difficult phase of restoration began. The project was completed in May 2001 and in September, H.R.H. The Prince of Wales officially re-opened the Huddersfield Narrow.


No. 5 North West and the Pennines  /  Nicholson

Author: Harper Collins  /  Editor: Nicholson / Language: English
Delivery time: instantly

Navigational notes include: Planning a cruise, using a lock and bridges, winding holes, boatyards and local services. Covers the Aire & Calder and Calder & Hebble navigations and the Bridgewater, Lancaster, Huddersfield Broad and Narrow, Leeds & Liverpool, Macclesfield, Peak Forrest, Ashton, Rochdale and Trent & Mersey (Preston Brook to Kidsgrove) canals. Also: The history of each canal, places of interest, pubs and restaurants, opportunities for walking and cycling. Spiralbounding, size: A5

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