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Notes on the Geography of The United Kingdom: Ironbridge: Photo 16

world pictures The United Kingdom: Ironbridge

The canal ends here at the Hay Inclined Plane, where for a century starting in 1791 tub boats were lifted or lowered between the Severn and, up top, the Shropshire Union Canal. Unlike some planes, there was no steam engine here. Instead, two boats, linked by a rope, moved simultaneously, one up counterbalanced by one down. The rails descend into the water so the tub boats--each could carry five tons of freight--could be floated onto a cradle already resting on the track.

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