Thursday, 18 December 2008

Is it a plane?

Here is a photo of Caxton and Matilda Rose nestled on the Market Harborough Arm at Foxton and taken from the top of the derelict inclined plane.

Above is an old ice breaker exhited at Foxton. This could be manned by up to fifteen men and pulled by 8-12 horses! The men would rock the boat from side to side in order to break the ice, keeping the commercial traffic moving in all weathers.

Here is second iceboat.

Looking down the inclined plane to the lower basin which is now used for moorings.

Looking across the remains of the top of the inclined plane. There are three supporting/guiding rails per plane and two planes allowing one boat to be lowered and one to be raised at the same time. The narrowboats would enter a caisson, (super sized elongated bucket of water) and be lowered to the bottom of the plane by the miracle of steam power. This must have been a vast improvement over queuing and then working your way through ten locks! The restoration trust is now trying to raise the funds to restore the Foxton inclined plane.


Anonymous said...

Must have felt quite weird to be in a boat being pulled up that slope - it looks pretty steep. Isn't it good that they left some of the rails there - gives a real feel for how it all worked.Looks idyllic and I'm so glad that you're having a great time on Caxton.
Sue, Indigo Dream

Anonymous said...

nb Pickles No2 is the ice breaker of the 21st century! One man, one insane vison to get to the services no matter what!

Happy Christmas!

Lesley K Nb Caxton said...

Yes Keith I thought I caught that slightly insane glint in your eye! Happy Christmas to you and yours, see you at the services...

Lesley K Nb Caxton said...

Hi Sue
The slope is VERY steep but what a wonderful thing it will be if they ever get it fully restored!
Having a great time, loving it all. See you in the new year hopefully?