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Grand Union Canal - I didn't know that!

Although I don't have a boat I regularly cycle or walk the Grand Union Canal tow paths through Milton Keynes and beyond. The canal has become an important part of my life, not for any particular reason, I just seem drawn to it. You can't avoid the Grand Union Canal in Milton Keynes as it threads it's way through the city. For over 10 miles the canal passes canal villages that date back to the doomsday book as it weaves it's way under the city grid roads that create the urban landscape above. Just imagine if William Jessop, the engineer responsible for the canal's creation, could see it today. He would see much of the canal as he'd left it, but being used in a way that it was never intended and existing as an integral part of an alien landscape he never could have dreamt of.

But the Grand Union Canal is so much more than the 10 mile stretch in Milton Keynes. It still is the principal navigable waterway between London and the Midlands and is rich with a history that has shaped thousands of lives for over 200 years. At over 135 miles it is the longest canal in the UK and was probably the most important canal project of the crazy canal mania period which started in the late 18th century.

Now I'm retired I've become much more interested in the canal, the rich tapestry of life it supports and it's history. The Grand Union Canal was an important part of the massive expansion of canal building in the late 18th century, which was one of the fundamental building blocks at the start of the industrial revolution in this country. There's so much I'm learning, that I think is fascinating, so I thought I'd write some blogs and share what I find out. You can find the series of blogs using the following link (no idea how many there will be!):

As photography is something myself and my wife also have an interest in I'll include piccies as well, and just to get us going here's a few piccies of the canal in MK that have been taken over the last couple of years, either by myself or my lovely wife.

More soon.

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