Friday, 14 August 2009

The remarkable Macca

We been from one fabulous canal to another. From Brindley's Cauldon to Telford's Macclesfield. How utterly different they are. One romances the landscape, the other bosses it.
Brindley's canals work with the land they run through, caressing the contours, twisting and snaking around hills, easing diplomatically past obstacles. Telford didn't have time for that sort of nonsense. His canals went where he wanted them too and if the landscape got in the way, he embanked it, cut through it or built across it. The Macclesfield is a masterclass: this is no tame terrain, easily managed but rugged, hilly country and he's dominated it with his man-made engineering. Only in the face of the biggest obstacles like the massive 'The Cloud' hill does he give way and even then it's a series of straight lines and 90 degree corners. His Bosley lock flight is a series of big solid steps, built in huge limestone slabs. The Bollington Aqueduct (pictured) towers above the village in the valley.
It's not just a spectacular canal but a tribute to a great engineer.

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