Some rivers have been navigable for centuries but they were not interconnected. The building of canals, begun in the 1760's and 70's began a process by which eventually there were over 3,000 miles of connected waterway-with about a thousand miles of navigations not connected to the mi system. Thus goods could be carried in units of several tens of tons-land transport had previously beam retracted to single tons. Canals had as monopoly for about seventy years but it was gradually eroded by railways from about 1840 onwards. But waterways carried a substantial if decreasing amount of traffic –narrow boat carrying only ended in there 1960's and River traffic still has a minor importance.
The course will be an imaginary cruise-profusely illustrated with colour slides taken over the years since 1960- from Ripon (furthest north point on connected waterways to Sharpness on the Bristol Channel. The rivers Ouse, Aire and Trent, the Grand Union Canal, the Birmingham navigations, the canal to the Severn, then that river and finally the ship canal to Sharpness-and (separate courses) there are two tours to canals during the session.
No class Nov 2nd, class instead on 7 December