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News article created on 1 March 2013

Ageing lock gates replaced on Rochdale Canal

This week we've started maintenance works at Lock 86 on the 200-year old Rochdale Canal in the heart of Manchester’s city centre.

We're investing £50,000 to refurbish Lock 86, Canal Street on the Rochdale Canal. The lock chamber will be emptied of water to allow the removal of the 20-year old lock gate and for a new top gate to be lifted in using a 100-tonne crane. Our engineers will also inspect the lock chamber and re-point the brickwork. The work is are expected to be turned around in just over two and a half weeks.

New lock gates are made in the our specialist workshops at Bradley in the West Midlands and Stanley Ferry in Yorkshire. Each lock gate is hand-crafted by a skilled team of carpenters and made from sustainably-sourced British oak. A single lock gate weighs on average 3.6 tonnes, can take up to 20 days to make and has a working life of 25-30 years.

David Baldachinno, Manchester & Pennine waterway manager says: “The Rochdale Canal is popular with boaters who enjoy the challenge of navigating through the 92 locks from the centre of Manchester to the scenic hills of Sowerby Bridge in Yorkshire. The refurbishment works we’re undertaking will ensure the canal is in good working order for the next 25-30 years.”