Caledonian Canal

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The Caledonian Canal connects the Scottish east coast at Inverness with the west coast at Corpach near Fort William in Scotland. The canal was built in the early nineteenth century by the Scottish engineer Thomas Telford. It is about 60 miles (100 kilometres) long and reaches 106 feet (32 metres) above sea level. Only one third of the entire length is man-made, the rest is made up of Loch Dochfour, Loch Ness, Loch Oich, and Loch Lochy in the Great Glen. There are 29 locks, four aqueducts and 10 bridges in the course of the canal.[1]

It was designed partly as a job creation project, as many people were leaving Scotland. It was also for ships to avoid the dangerous journey around the north of Scotland past Cape Wrath and the Pentland Firth. It was paid for with government money, unlike most British canals, with an Act of Parliament in 1803. The locks were built to take 32-gun frigates for the Royal Navy.

It opened in 1822 and cost £910,000.

Part of Corpach double lock collapsed in 1843 and the canal was closed for repairs, and made deeper. Queen Victoria took a trip along it in 1873 and it became more of a tourist attraction than a shipping route. It is now is now a Scheduled Ancient Monument.

References[change | change source]

  1. "The Caledonian Canal". Scottish Canals. Retrieved 2023-03-12.