200 Year Old Bridge Saved as Part of Buckingham Arm Restoration

news_littlehillbridge120pxIssue date: 22nd November 2011

Buckingham Canal Society continues in its work to restore the Buckingham Arm of the Grand Union Canal and has completed the re-pointing and repair of one of the remaining original bridges over the canal. The sympathetic brick and stone restoration by skilled craft members of the Society included hand making clay bricks to achieve the original shape and size. The bridge provides a farmer’s access across the canal as part of that section.

Since its opening in 1801, the canal has previously been used to transport bricks, coal and manufactured goods as well as imports from the London Docks. It also provided transport for agricultural produce from the farms and villages along its route.

The waterway to Buckingham ran a total of just under 11 miles from the Grand Union Canal at Cosgrove Lock along the Stony Stratford and Buckingham Arms. The original route passed through Old Stratford, Deanshanger, Thornton, Leckhampstead Wharf, Thornborough Mill, Maids Moreton Mill and Bourton Meadow. Much of the canal is now dry, and parts have been built over. Certain sections of the route would need to be created anew due to the development that has taken place in and around villages since the canal’s closure. 

Early in 2010, BCS commissioned an outline feasibility study regarding the restoration of the entire length of the canal arm. The report concluded that it was a feasible project, although significant funding and commitment will be required.

BCS is actively seeking new members to join the existing membership of around 200 and welcomes participation at all levels from the community. BCS is also actively seeking grant and other funding to progress its restoration activities working in partnership with Local Authorities in the area as well as other private companies. 

Further work is planned for the Cosgrove and Buckingham end sections of the canal route. New volunteers are always welcome and the society runs three work parties a month on alternate Thursdays and on the second Sunday of each month. No experience necessary!

For more details, please visit the BCS website at buckinghamcanal.org.uk or email info@buckinghamcanal.org.uk