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The Waterways Archives at Ellesmere Port

This important archive holds a wide range of primary material relating to the history of Britain’s canals and inland waterways and a smaller amount of secondary material from waterways around the world.

The document collection includes boat building plans and working records. Photographic collections include work by Robert Aickman, Michael Ware and Eric de Mare. 

We hold extensive collections relating to the Weaver Navigation Trust, Middlewich Wharf, the Charles Hadfield World Canals Research and the Manchester Ship Canal.

A wide range of books and periodicals about canals and waterways history are also available for research use. 

Access to the archive is FREE but must be by prior booking of a minimum 24 hours.

Further information
Click here for a copy of our leaflet
or call Linda Barley on 0151 373 4378.

Research Service
If you are unable to visit the archive we offer a limited research facility for family historians, academics, students, engineers and the media - anyone with an interest in the history of Britain's canals and waterways. Our research service uses the full range of material available in the archives as well as relevant online resources to carry out searches for individuals.

Click here for an information sheet.

Latest news
A comprehensive review of the archives at Ellesmere Port has recently been undertaken. The review, known as 'The Kingfisher Project', was funded by MLA Renaissance North West and will allow us to introduce a new cataloguing programme, train staff and increase public access to the collection and the the history of Britain's canals.


The Waterways Archive

Ellesmere Port Home


Canal history - Hetti Jackson, boatwoman studio portrait, 1905.

 Canal history - AA Wander butty ‘Enid’ at Sutton Stop, 1930s.

  The Waterways Trust Designated Collection     National Waterways Museum  
© National Waterways Museum 2007