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Stevenston Canal

Canal (Period Unassigned)

Site Name Stevenston Canal

Classification Canal (Period Unassigned)

Canmore ID 217581

Site Number NS24SE 85

NGR NS 2539 4130

NGR Description From c. NS 2508 4127 to c. NS 2684 4137

Datum OSGB36 - NGR

Permalink http://canmore.org.uk/site/217581

Ordnance Survey licence number 100057073. All rights reserved.
Canmore Disclaimer. © Copyright and database right 2018.

Administrative Areas

  • Council North Ayrshire
  • Parish Stevenston
  • Former Region Strathclyde
  • Former District Cunninghame
  • Former County Ayrshire

Archaeology Notes

NS24SE 85.00 From c. 2508 4127 to c. 2684 4137.

Coal mined in Stevenston parish for export to Ireland had to be carried by land from the start of operations, prior to 1700, until Robert Reid Cunningham, on inheriting the estate in 1770, decided to construct a canal to reduce the cost of carriage. The canal, which had no locks, was built in 1772 and ran for two and a quarter miles from the mines to a location situated within six hundred yards of the harbour at Saltcoats. By 19 September 1772 the waterway was completed and in use. Its minimum depth was four feet and minimum width at the bottom was twelve feet. Due to the fact that the ground was irregular it was very wide and deep in some places. Side branches were built to serve pits as they became operational along the route. Underground subsidiaries were constructed in 1778, but the canal fell into disuse and was abandoned c. 1830.

J Lindsay 1968.

The canal, which had been abandoned before the 1st edition of the OS 6-inch map (Ayrshire 1860, sheet xvi) was surveyed in 1856, is not marked but a possible line, with coal pits shown on either side, can be traced between NS 2508 4127 and NS 2684 4137, where there is a sluice marked (NS24SE 85.02). Near the W end of this line, which heads E towards the pits at Stevenston, Canal Bank is shown (c. NS 2528 4138) and there is a Canal Cottage (NS24SE 85.01).

Information from RCAHMS (MD) 26 June 2002.

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