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Caen Hill Locks, Devizes

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Landmark Tourist Spot
Caen Hill Locks are a flight of locks on the Kennet and Avon Canal, between Rowde and Devizes in Wiltshire England.

The 29 locks have a rise of 237 feet in 2 miles or a 1 in 44 gradient. The locks come in three groups. The lower seven locks, Foxhangers Wharf Lock to Foxhangers Bridge Lock, are spread over 1.2 km. The next sixteen locks form a steep flight in a straight line up the hillside. Because of the steepness of the terrain, the pounds between these locks are very short. As a result, 15 locks have unusually large sideways-extended pounds, to store the water needed to operate them. A final six locks take the canal into Devizes. This flight of locks was engineer John Rennie's solution to climbing the very steep hill, and was the last part of the 87 mile route of the canal to be completed. Whilst the locks were under construction a tramroad provided a link between the canal at Foxhangers to Devizes, the remains of which can be seen in the towpath arches in the road bridges over the canal. A brickyard was dug to the south of the workings to manufacture the bricks for the lock chambers and this remained in commercial use until the middle of the 20th century.
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  • As an engineer, this is a must see place. We didn't walk the full length of the locks. A nice round from 40-29 and back. Nice refreshments at the pub.  more »
  • A nice mornings walk to marvel that A)this was ever built in the first place B) the hard work they put into restoring the locks. A lovely back drop, and a nice cafe (Huge cake portions!) For a drink o...  more »
  • Walked up the locks and enjoyed a well deserved cream tea at the top. Watching the boaters enjoying going up and down.  more »