Regent's Canal Lock paddle

Contributed by London Canal Museum

Regent's Canal Lock paddle

A paddle from a lock on the Regent's Canal. This wooden paddle was crucial to the operation of locks, which were in turn crucial to the operation of canals, which were essential to transport before the railways. The paddle is raised and lowered to block or unblock a hole in a lock gate. The hole allows water to flow from the canal into or out of the lock, changing the level of the water inside the lock chamber. By raising and lowering paddles, water levels, and boats, could be raised and lowered and therefore boats could go uphill.

The wooden paddle is one of three on display in the museum, from London's Regent's Canal. The paddles were a small but essential part of the nationwide transport network that was the canal system. A new permanent exhibition about the management of water and the function of locks will be opened at London Canal Museum in the summer of 2010.

Comments are closed for this object

Most of the content on A History of the World is created by the contributors, who are the museums and members of the public. The views expressed are theirs and unless specifically stated are not those of the BBC or the British Museum. The BBC is not responsible for the content of any external sites referenced. In the event that you consider anything on this page to be in breach of the site’s House Rules please Flag This Object.

BBC © 2014 The BBC is not responsible for the content of external sites. Read more.

This page is best viewed in an up-to-date web browser with style sheets (CSS) enabled. While you will be able to view the content of this page in your current browser, you will not be able to get the full visual experience. Please consider upgrading your browser software or enabling style sheets (CSS) if you are able to do so.