SJ2741 : On the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

taken 2 years ago, near to Froncysyllte, Wrexham/Wrecsam, Great Britain

On the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct
On the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct
I have no problem with heights, and happily (but completely against the signage) rode a bike across this aqueduct, as it's something I've wanted to do for years. There were a number of folk clinging to the iron railings on the right for dear life. The aqueduct is Grade I listed LinkExternal link and dates from the turn of the 18th century, when it was built by William Jessop and Thomas Telford, the Principal Canal Engineer and General Agent respectively. The listing details stress that it is "listed at grade I for its important contribution to the development of canal engineering and the structural use of cast iron, and as an internationally renowned monument of the Industrial Revolution." which is some accolade.
Llangollen Canal
The Llangollen canal is an arm of the Shropshire Union canal that runs from Hurleston Junction to Llangollen with a wide variety of scenery along its course. Its total length is 46 miles, but the last 1½ miles from Llangollen to Llantisilio is unnavigable by any boats over about 10' length.
The canal's vital statistics for craft are:
Length 72 '
Beam 6'10"
Headroom 7'
Draught 2'3" (Hurleston to Pontcysyllte) 2' (P. to Llangollen)
These are the maximum dimensions for any craft, based on the minimum dimensions of locks & bridges.
There are a total of 21 locks on the canal, but only two between Llangollen and Whitchurch (a distance of about 31 miles). One of the most notable things about the canal is the strong flow especially in the "narrows" near Llangollen and in the tunnels near Chirk. About 12 million gallons of water passes down this canal from the River Dee to the Shropshire Union every day.
The most famous feature of this canal is the superb feat of engineering that is the 200-year-old Pontcysyllte Aqueduct rising 126' above the River Dee and running for over 335 yds - for more information on this see the numerous photos for squares SJ2742 and SJ2741
Pontcysyllte Aqueduct :: SJ2742
The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct is a magnificent feat of engineering, particularly considering that it is over 200 years old.It was designed and built by Thomas Telford, though William Jessop was the overall engineer in charge of the canal. It is rightly considered to be one of Telford's masterpieces and looking at the stonework of the arches today, the quality of the building work belies its age, showing no signs of wear.
It took about ten years to design and build and was opened on 26th November 1805 at an estimated cost of £47,018 equivalent to about £3m in today's money. The aqueduct has 18 arches each spanning 53' (16m) with four of its massive piers in the River Dee (Afon Dyfrdwy). The total length is 1007' (307m) and its maximum height above the river is 126' (38m) - it is just 11' (3.3m) wide at the top however !
Unsurprisingly, the structure is Grade I listed LinkExternal link LinkExternal link but it achieved the top accolade of becoming a World Heritage Site when it was inscribed by UNESCO on the World Heritage List on 27 June 2009 LinkExternal link

Finally, from a Geograph perspective it is noteworthy that it crosses a gridline and so photographs of it appear in both squares SJ2741 and SJ2742
Listed Buildings and Structures
Listed buildings and structures are officially designated as being of special architectural, historical or cultural significance. There are over half a million listed structures in the United Kingdom, covered by around 375,000 listings.
Listed status is more commonly associated with buildings or groups of buildings, however it can cover many other structures, including bridges, headstones, steps, ponds, monuments, walls, phone boxes, wrecks, parks, and heritage sites, and in more recent times a road crossing (Abbey Road) and graffiti art (Banksy 'Spy-booth') have been included.

In England and Wales there are three main listing designations;
Grade I (2.5%) - exceptional interest, sometimes considered to be internationally important.
Grade II* (5.5%) - particularly important buildings of more than special interest.
Grade II (92%) - nationally important and of special interest.

There are also locally listed structures (at the discretion of local authorities) using A, B and C designations.

In Scotland three classifications are also used but the criteria are different. There are around 47,500 Listed buildings.
Category A (8%)- generally equivalent to Grade I and II* in England and Wales
Category B (51%)- this appears generally to cover the ground of Grade II, recognising national importance.
Category C (41%)- buildings of local importance, probably with some overlap with English Grade II.

In Northern Ireland the criteria are similar to Scotland, but the classifications are:
Grade A (2.3%)
Grade B+ (4.7%)
Grade B (93%)

…read more at wikipedia LinkExternal link
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Grid Square
SJ2741, 282 images   (more nearby )
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Date Taken
Tuesday, 19 September, 2017   (more nearby)
Wednesday, 29 November, 2017
Geographical Context
Historic sites and artefacts  Paths  Canals 
Primary Subject of Photo
Subject Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SJ 2703 4188 [10m precision]
WGS84: 52:58.1575N 3:5.2786W
Camera Location
OSGB36: geotagged! SJ 27021 41835
View Direction
North-northeast (about 22 degrees)
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Image Type (about): geograph 
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