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Canals around Coventry

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Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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376 of 377  Tue 25th Jun 2019 3:49pm  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:2922

When I think of the Coventry of two centuries ago, my mind goes to Constable's painting of 'The Lock'. A beautiful painting of what could have been on the Sherbourne instead of the Stour. The Sherbourne had to have been a much greater river as they called it the 'Severn' - it once covered Spon End and West Orchard to the depth of 5/6 feet in a violent storm, trapping the people in St John's Church for some time until rescued by horse and wagon. Although a landscape painter rather than an history painter, it gives a clear view of what old locks were about. He also painted several water mills in the early 19th century so we can imagine what Pool Meadow once looked like - or I can.
Canals around Coventry
Kaga simpson
Peacehaven, East Sussex
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377 of 377  Wed 3rd Jul 2019 11:26am  
Member: Joined Sep 2014  Total posts:2922

"Okay, let's get this monkey into the cut, now its bottom's been cleaned". These are the words I would expect about to be uttered by the guy in the narrowboat (taken about 1880) on post #50, Wyken Slough topic. He owned the repair yard at Tusses Bridge, employed the men in the picture, ten boats and the horses to tow them, a wharf in Coventry Basin, offices in Bishop Street, and a number of houses and a couple of pubs. 'Monkey' was the nickname of a butty boat - cleaned and repaired, the boat is on the slipway ready to be slipped into the cut. His sons, born on the boats, followed his calling - one of his grandsons was the last man to leave working on the cut for Inland Waterways in the Coventry area, the man responsible for stopping the cut from draining between Brinklow and Sutton Stop during the war. In 1855 all narrowboats had to be registered and licensed to trade. The first pleasure boat to berth in Coventry Basin was in 1954, it was towed by hand from New Inn Bridge to the basin, to stop the engine from being fouled.
Canals around Coventry

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