Project Description

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Sail and Storm; The Aylsham Navigation charts the history of the navigation of the River Bure from 1779 until it was washed away in the great flood of August 26 1912.

The nine-and-a-half mile navigation, between Coltishall and Aylsham, included five locks at Horstead, Buxton, Oxnead, Burgh and Aylsham. It was used by wherries ferrying cargo, including cereals and coal. The navigation’s heyday was in the mid 19th-century but it was already in decline by 1912 because of the arrival of the railway.

The volume was the result of collaboration between Aylsham Local History Society and Dr Sarah Spooner, a landscape archaeologist at UEA.It has won two awards – Canal Book of the Year and overall Transport Book of the Year. Dr Spooner edited the book, which includes many photographs and maps, and the historical research was led by Dr Roger Polhill, chairman of the society.

Sources included the Aylsham Town Archive and the work of the late Desmond Best, to whom the book is dedicated.

£15.00 + P&P