Basingstoke Canal – The 14 Deepcut Locks

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The full 37 and half miles from the Wey to Basingstoke

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Cowshot Manor Lock

The bottom lock of the Deepcut flight is no.16. As it goes it is rather an ordinary lock devoid of any features such as an overbridge. Lock 17 is the first real important lock on the Deepcut flight. Restoration of the flight began here at the lock by Cowshot Manor bridge in 1975, before the main thrust of work that was known as the ‘Deepcut Dig.’ Cowshot Manor bridge itself was rebuilt in 1982, so it is a replica of the original one. It is also called just Cowshot bridge, and I have seen a reference to it being called Goal bridge, but whether that is a fact I do not know

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If one walks up the Deepcut flight, they will be impressed by the locks that dont seem to leak. Well here’s the secret – everytime a boat passes through any lock (except Ash) the gates have to be resealed by the canal rangers with a keb to prevent loss of water

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Basingstoke canal volunteers working at Lock 22, March 2009. Following the agreement by the councils for funding the canal, intensive repairs are being undertaken along most of the locks, including new gates and by-washes

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View of Deepcut lock 23 (and 24 in the far distance)

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Two views of lock 24. Compared to other Basingstoke locks, no.24 unusually has its number situated offside. The right hand picture shows railings and brickwork installed by the army as part of a training course incorprating the canal as a ‘swimming pool.’ The same situation also exists above lock 22.

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Looking from Lock 24 to 25 (and Curzon Bridge)

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Curzon Bridge lock

Lock 25 is one of three locks on the Deepcut flight that do not have numbers. The others are 26 and 28. Lock 25 is unusual in that it has a bridge directly across its chamber. One of the few other examples on the UK canals is at Kings Norton stop lock on the Stratford Canal. The bridge is known as Curzon bridge and was built in (appropriately) 1925. It crosses the adjacent railway as well and once constituted an access road to one of the army camps. The bridge is owned by the army

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An up express from Exeter passing the canal by Curzon Bridge. This is one of the trains that doesnt need the ‘juice’ being a Class 159 typical of the Waterloo-Exeter services. At this point the railway is exactly 30 miles from Waterloo

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Spectacular scenery at lock 26

Below: A general view of Deepcut top lock and cottage. Boats wishing to ascend or descned the canal to/from the junction with the River Wey Navigation are advised to allow two days for the trip because of restrictions. The break in jouney can be made between the bottom of Brookwood and the top of St. Johns locks. This means that Deepcut & Brookwood must be done in a single day, and the same applies to the St. Johns to Woodham/River Wey section.

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General view at Deepcut top lock. The gates are new, waiting to be installed March 2009.

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The attractive lock cottage at the top of the Deepcut flight

Next: The cutting and Frimley aqueduct

WOODHAM JUNCTION TO GREYWELL

Intro / Byfleet – Woodham Locks / Woodham – St. Johns / St. Johns – Hermitage / Brookwood – Pirbright / Deepcut Flight / Deepcut – Frimley / Basingstoke Canal Centre / Great Bottom – Ash / Ash lock – Norris Hill / Fleet – Crookham / Chequers – Barley Mow / Barley Mow – Odiham / Odiham – Greywell

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