JAMES BRINDLEY AND THE DUKE OF BRIDGEWATER
In 1759, with the Duke of Bridgewater’s embryonic scheme for a canal to link his mines to Salford having hit technical problems, and with no obvious way to reach the major market of Manchester, the Duke’s agent John Gilbert summoned James Brindley, a millwright with a streak of ingenuity. It was the start of a collaboration which led to the completion of the Bridgewater Canal, credited as the catalyst for the dawn of the Canal Age. The author seeks to separate history from lore (did Brindley really use a Cheshire cheese to demonstrate to Parliament how he planned to build an aqueduct?) and to apportion the credit correctly between Brindley, the Duke and Gilbert as she tells the story of their pioneering work. It’s a fascinating story of two very different lives that were linked.
James Brindley and the Duke of Bridgewater, Victoria Owens, Amberley, £15.99, amberley-books.com, 978-1-4456-4966-0