Ancient Monuments

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Roving bridge and lock called Newport Lock 255m south east of Wrekin View Farm

A Scheduled Monument in Newport, Telford and Wrekin

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Latitude: 52.7713 / 52°46'16"N

Longitude: -2.3819 / 2°22'54"W

OS Eastings: 374332.724953

OS Northings: 319372.937

OS Grid: SJ743193

Mapcode National: GBR 7Z.YHXZ

Mapcode Global: WH9CR.DL0S

Entry Name: Roving bridge and lock called Newport Lock 255m south east of Wrekin View Farm

Scheduled Date: 6 March 1968

Source: Historic England

Source ID: 1002952

English Heritage Legacy ID: WK 221

County: Telford and Wrekin

Civil Parish: Newport

Built-Up Area: Newport

Traditional County: Shropshire

Lieutenancy Area (Ceremonial County): Shropshire

Church of England Parish: Newport St Nicholas

Church of England Diocese: Lichfield


The monument includes a roving bridge and lock situated in the valley and on the southern side of the Strine Brook and forming part of the Shropshire Union Canal Newport Branch. Both the roving bridge and lock survive as stone-built structures on an accessible section of the canal. A roving bridge allowed horses to cross the canal in order to use the alternative tow path. This example is regarded as one of the best on the canal system and possibly the best in the West Midlands. It was built in 1835-6. A lock enabled travel by barge up and down inclines by adjusting the height of the water.

Sources: PastScape 1044688

Source: Historic England

Reasons for Scheduling

Inland navigation using rivers originated in Britain in the prehistoric period and continues in use to the present day. From the Roman period, both canals (artificial waterways constructed primarily for navigation purposes) and river navigations (improvements to existing waterways to make navigation easier) were constructed, and medieval canals such as the navigable dykes dug by the monks in Holderness or the Exeter Canal are known. Although the advantages of canals and inland waterways for the inexpensive and safe means of transporting heavy, bulky or fragile goods had long been recognised elsewhere in Europe, it was not until 1759 that the principal age of canal building began in England began, with the construction of the Bridgewater Canal from Worsley to Manchester. Constructed by James Brindley and opened in 1761, it carried coal the seven miles to Manchester from the Duke of Bridgewater's mines at Worsley at less than half the cost of the traditional packhorse method. Over the next 70 years canals played an important part in the growth of industry and the expansion of trade in many parts of the country, in particular in the cotton, woollen, mining and engineering industries of Lancashire and West Yorkshire, in the Staffordshire pottery industry with its new water connection to the River Mersey and the port of Liverpool, and in the huge industrial expansion of Birmingham which, as the hub of the inland waterways system, rose to become England's second most prosperous city. Canals also facilitated the relatively rapid movement of bulk agricultural produce from the countryside to the rapidly expanding industrial towns of the north and midlands. Canal construction also brought with it the requirement for a whole range of associated structures. Many of these, such as bridges, canal workers' houses, warehouses, wet docks, dry docks, locks and water management systems involved the modification and development of the existing designs of such structures to meet the new requirements of the Canal Age, which also introduced the need for major technological innovation in, amongst other things, the construction of tunnels and aqueducts, and the development of inclined planes and boat lifts. The great age of canals lasted until about the 1840s, when their utility was eroded by the huge expansion of railways with their quick and cheap transportation of people and goods. During their relatively brief period of use, however, canals became the most important method of industrial transportation, making a major contribution to England's Industrial Revolution. The roving bridge and lock called Newport Lock 255m south east of Wrekin View Farm survive well and will contain archaeological and environmental evidence relating to their construction, technical achievements and refinements and overall landscape context. The roving bridge in particular is viewed as a particularly well preserved and representative example of its type.

Source: Historic England

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