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The Stroudwater Navigation holds a unique place in the fascinating history of Britain's canal network. First planned in 1729, it was one of the oldest successful canal schemes, predating the Bridgwater Canal by a generation. In continuous ownership of the Company of proprietors of the Stroudwater Navigation, it is also the oldest canal company in the world. With the visit of the Prince of Wales in 1750, the canal can lay claim to the first use of a canal as a leisure resource in the world too. From the building of Blunder Lock, deliberately at the wrong level, to the Battle of Carter's Close, where locals would infill the canal at night as the contractors dug it out by day, Michael Handford tells the story of the Stroudwater in this new edition of his classic work on the canal. Much has happened on the canal since the book was written and it is now being restored to its former glory, when it will yet again break records as a unique survivor of the canal age.
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