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Craven by water

The Leeds Liverpool Canal winds its way from West Yorkshire through Craven into Lancashire.

Leeds Liverpool Canal 

No longer the highway of the Industrial Revolution it has turned its attention to pleasure cruising, from the marina in Skipton (Directions) you can enjoy a relaxing skippered trip along the canal or hire a self drive holiday barge.

Wander along the canal tow path and view the bright painted barges.

Skipton Canal

An Act was passed in 1770, and construction began - in fact, the first stretch to be completed was from right here in Skipton to a few miles East in Shipley.

The canal was opened in 1816, and during its heyday the Leeds-Liverpool transported over one million tons of coal, along with limestone, wool, machinery, groceries.

Did you know?

  • The canal is 127 miles long, connecting Liverpool to the Aire & Colder Navigation - making coast to coast transport possible
  • Construction took over 40 years, partly due to running out of funds in 1770 - finally completed in 1816
  • One horse could tow a 50 ton canal barge
  • During World War II the canal formed part of britain's defensive plans, with tank traps, bunkers and fortified pubs & barns. Concrete pill boxes still remain.
  • The term 'leg it' comes from Foulrdige Tunnel, where there is no tow path and workers were forced to lay on their backs and 'walk' the boat through by pushing on the tunnel's roof.
  • A cow once swam the length of Foulridge tunnel after falling in the water - it was then taken to nearby Hole-in-the-Corner pub where it was revived with a drink of brandy

Useful web sites can be found at:

  • Association of Inland Navigation Authorities
    AINA represents the inland navigation authorities of the United Kingdom.
  • Broads Authority
    The Broads is Britain's largest wetland and is part of the family of National Parks.
  • British Marine Federation
    website for the British boating industry's trade association, the British Marine Federation
  • British Waterways
    British Waterways is the public body responsible for maintaining and developing the waterways and their heritage for everyone to enjoy.
  • Environment Agency
    the leading public body responsible for protecting and improving the environment in England and Wales
  • Inland Waterways Amenity Advisory Council (IWAAC)
    A statutory body set up under the 1968 Transport Act to advise the Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (DEFRA), the Scottish Executive and British Waterways (BW) on strategic policy for the use and development of the 2000 miles of inland waterways managed by BW.
  • Inland Waterways Association
    Founded in 1946 - over 50 years of successful campaigning for the Inland Waterways of Great Britain
  • Inland Waterways Association of Ireland
    Welcome to the (semi-official) IWAI homepage
  • National Association of Boat Owners
    The National Association of Boat Owners is dedicated to promoting the interests and concerns of boaters on Britain's Canals and Rivers.
  • Residential Boat Owners' Association
    The Residential Boat Owners' Association exists to act in the interests of boat dwellers. Maybe you'd like to live afloat but you don't know where to start, our FAQ covers the most common questions we get asked about living on a boat. You can also find details of our work and a diary of events.
  • The Waterways Trust
    Our task is to promote the widest possible public awareness and enjoyment of the UK's waterways. Working in partnership with individuals, communities and organisations, to conserve, restore, improve and interpret all aspects of waterways.
  • Towpath Action Group
    Campaigning for better access on the towpaths of the country's canals
  • Waterways Liaison Service On-Line
    Bringing together waterway related organisations to promote their events to a wider audience.
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