Shardlow Heritage Centre
The Working Port 1770 - 1948

   Local Waterways on Old Postcards

 The River Trent, it's natural and artificial tributaries illustrated by early 20th century postcards
There was a plan to make the Trent navigable to Burton-on-Trent as early as 1698, although small barges could already reach King's Mills. An initiative by Lord Paget led to an Act of 1699. Paget leased his monopoly to George Hanes of Burton and Fosbrook of Shardlow Hall. Problems of shoals, especially downstream from Wilden Ferry, led to the formation of a Company in 1783 to improve navigation from there to Gainsborough. 
Bridge and Boat House at Burton on Trent, franked at Burton on Trent July 8 1908.
Swarkestone Bridge. Valentine series 48736, never posted.
Kings Mills, Castle Donington, franking illegible, printed in Saxony.
Derwent Navigation and Derby Canal. 
The River Derwent was open to navigation from 1721 to 1783 but was never very satisfactory and it was replaced by the Derby Canal in 1795. 
Derby from the Long Bridge, franked 8 Sept 1905, Valentine Series.
Foot Bridge and Weir, River Derwent, Derby, Valentine Series 49571.
Derby from Derwent Bridge, franked 6 June 1908, Reliable Series 289/6
River Trent. 
In 1789 Jessop was employed to survey the River and as a result Sawley Cut was made in 1793 and Cranfleet Cut in 1797. 
Harrington Bridge over the River at Sawley was opened in 1790 and the present structure erected in 1906. 
Trent Bridge, Sawley, Peveril Series, not posted.
Canal Bridge, Sawley, Derbyshire, franked 7 Feb 1921, Clumber Series 327.
Trent Bridge and Old Tollhouse, Sawley, franking illegible. Clumber series 326.
River Soar/Loughborough Navigation. 
The River Soar joins the Trent at Redhill. There had been several earlier attempts to make the River navigable to Loughborough but the major improvement was completed in 1780. Navigation was extended to Leicester in 1794. 
Red Hill Tunnel, Trent Lock, franked 6 Sept 1916, Peveril Series 1074
'House Boat Trent Lock' is in fact the nearby River Soar at Redhill, franked 1 Sept 1906, Peveril Series.
Normanton-on-Soar, Plough Series, not posted. The Plough is the name of the Public House whose landing stage is shown on the left of the photograph.
River Soar, Leicester, franked 10 Aug 1905, Valentine's Series 35643.
Erewash and Cromford Canals. 
The Erewash Canal runs for 12 miles to Langley Mill and was fully opened in 1779. The Cromford Canal extended navigation a further 14 miles plus branches to Pinxton and Lea Wood. 
Trent Lock, Long Eaton, Milton Series, not posted.
Trent Lock, near Nottingham, franked 28 May 1907, Kromo Series L20133X
Navigation Inn, Trent Lock, (2), published by A W Bourne, Leicester, not posted.
The Mills, Langley Mill, Derbys, franked 18 Aug 1910, Clumber Series 295.
15863 The Canal Whatstandwell, Derbyshire, Blum and Deben stamped on rear, not posted.
River Trent. 
The River Trent is bypassed in Nottingham by the Beeston Cut and a section of the Nottingham Canal. The Navigation rejoins the River at Meadow Lane Lock. 
Trent Weir Beeston, Notts, Peveril Series, not posted. On the right can be seen the bottom gates of Beeston Lower Lock, which allowed craft to continue down the Trent past Clifton and Wilford.
Trent Bridge and Exhibition, Nottingham, 1904, Hartmann 1201.4.
Trent Bridge, Nottingham, 1904. Note the removable cabin on the Upper Trent Boat.
Trent Bridge, Nottingham, franked 22 April 1905, Valentine's Series.
Landing Stage, Trent, Nottingham, written 5 June 1912, Valentine's Series 66851.

Grantham Canal. 
The Grantham Canal, opened in 1797, runs from the River Trent at Nottingham 33 miles through the Vale of Belvoir to Grantham. 

Redmile Church, near Grantham, 24 December 1912, supplied free by Christian Novels Publishing Company.

River Trent. 
The River downstream from Nottingham was the subject of a major improvement scheme in the 1920's when all the locks were rebuilt. Below Cromwell lock the River is tidal. 

Cow Drinks Colwick Notts., Clumber Series, not posted.
Colwick Hall Nottingham, franked April 1907, Kromo Series 20132.
The Lock, Holme Pierrepont, franked 14 January 1911, Clumber Series.
The Cliffs, Radcliffe, Notts, Clumber Series, not posted.
Hoveringham, Notts., franked 23 September 1907, Clumber Series 21.
Gunthorpe Bridge, Notts., franking illegible, Clumber Series.
Newark Castle and River, franked 12 April 1907, Valentine's Series 22462.
Newark Castle and Parish Church, franked 13 April 1914, Frith 45101.
Dunham Bridge, Tuxfurd [Tuxford], Wrench Series 15709, not posted.
Trent Bridge at Gainsboro., printed in Germany, not posted.
River-side, West Stockwith, franked 19 May 1904, Belton, Typ.

River Idle/Chesterfield Canal. 
In the 16th century iron from Sweden was carried via the Humber, Trent and Idle Rivers and then by road to Sheffield. Other goods included millstones, lead and coal. The main port on the Idle was Bawtry. When the Chesterfield Canal was opened in 1777 it took the River's trade. 
River Idle, Retford, no publisher, 8190, not posted.
Greeings from Retford, Chesterfield Canal, Frith RFD.24, not posted.


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last updated on 3 December 2013