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Pontcystlle Aquaduct
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No: 406   Contributor: Andrew Wright   Year: 2005   Manufacturer: Unknown   Country: United Kingdom
Pontcystlle Aquaduct

I'm sorry I have been unable to find info on this wonderful structure, it carries the Llangollen Canal here in Wales. It has a footpath on one side and affords brilliant views over the surrounding
Picture added on 05 January 2007
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I travelled across this aqueduct many years ago on a rented narrow boat, and looking down from the right side in this photograph is almost a terrifying experience, as you cannot see the metal lip from the boat! It's like being suspended in mid-air!
(Details from Wikipedia)
The Pontcysyllte Aqueduct is a navigable aqueduct that carries the Llangollen Canal over the valley of the River Dee, between the villages of Trevor and Froncysyllte, Wrexham in north east Wales. Completed in 1805, it is both the longest and highest aqueduct in Britain, and is a Grade I Listed Building.
The aqueduct, built by Thomas Telford and William Jessop, is 1, 007 feet long, 11 feet wide and 5 feet 3 inches deep. It consists of a cast iron trough supported 126 feet above the river by 19 hollow masonry piers (pillars). Each span is 53 feet wide.
The mortar used comprised lime, water and ox blood. The iron castings were produced at the Plaskynaston Foundry, and each casting dovetails into the next. To caulk the joints, Welsh flannel was dipped in boiling sugar, after which the joints were sealed with lead. Then it was left for six months with water inside to see if the trough was watertight.
Part of what was originally called the Ellesmere Canal, it was one of the first major feats of civil engineering undertaken by leading civil engineer Thomas Telford (supervised by the more experienced canal engineer William Jessop). The iron was supplied by William Hazeldine from his foundries at Shrewsbury and nearby Cefn Mawr. It was opened on 26 November 1805, having taken around ten years to design and build at a total cost of GB£47, 000.
The towpath is cantilevered over the trough, which is the full width of the aqueduct, so that narrowboats are able to move more freely through the water. Walkers are protected by railings on the outside edge of the towpath, but the holes to fit railings on the other side of the aqueduct were never used. As the edge of the trough is only about 6 inches above the water level, and therefore below the deck of a narrowboat, the boat steerer has nothing between them and the sheer drop.

Added by Peter Langsdale on 24 January 2008.
Be assured I've done this in a 21ft Llangollen canal cruiser, on the journey we took back to the boats "birthplace". The stearing seat was above the side level of the boat, I took the seat down and stood within the hull. That was really un-nerving looking straight down into the river, canal side hidden by the boat!
Great trip, happy memories but the crossing was a colly-wobble time.

Added by Ian Lisseman on 28 January 2014.
Thank you Peter and Ian, for adding a bit more to what was only a picture, very interesting reading.

Added by Andrew Wright on 31 January 2014.
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