Southampton and Salisbury Canal: Picture Gallery No 5

Salisbury Arm: Kimbridge to Lockerley

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At Kimbridge Junction, the Southampton & Salisbury Canal left the Andover Canal passing under a bridge carrying the towing path of the latter. Immediately, the Salisbury Arm negotiated a stop lock to prevent the Andover from losing water should there be any leaks in the Salisbury canal beyond. Although lines of the two canals could be seen in the 1970's, today there is no sign of the junction: neither the bridge nor the stop lock remain and the embankment running west to the river has been levelled. With the cessation of sand and gravel extraction on the other side of the valley south of Dunbridge, the conveyor belt that in part used the old railway and the aggregates depot at Kimbridge Junction have been removed since these pictures were taken.

Just over 100 yards from the junction, the canal crossed the River Test and several side streams on a four-arched brick aqueduct. This was demolished during the building of the Andover and Redbridge Railway in the 1860s. The foundations of the brick piers were removed just after WWII by the river board.

West of the river, the canal was carried across the Test Valley on an embankment for about 700 yards and can still be seen running south-westwards in amongst the trees. This substantial structure is still some 10 - 15 feet high at its highest and only pierced by the site of a two-arched aqueduct (demolished before 1870) where part of the River Test and the River Dun were crossed near their confluence.

Just after crossing a public footpath (the Test Way) and at the end of the embankment, in amongst the trees, is the untraceable site of Lock 1 which started the climb towards Salisbury. Within a few yards is the first crossing of the arm by the railway to Salisbury.

Having crossed the railway, the course of the canal turns westward passing behind or through the back gardens of houses in Barley Hill, Dunbridge. The line of the canal crosses the railway twice more immediately east of Dunbridge station (since 2006 called "Mottisfont and Dunbridge") and leaves railway property through the gate to the former goods yard. Crossing the road, the canal entered Dunbridge Wharf.

From Dunbridge the canal followed the road to Lockerley lying between the lane and the River Dun. The dry canal bed can be easily seen along this section - sometimes during the winter it contains some water. During construction of the canal, sections of the river had to be diverted to accommodate the waterway. There are no visible remains of Lock 2, the site of which is said to be beneath the garage of Dunnerley Cottage beside Lockerley Road. The rise in the road would tend to confirm this.

Several hundred yards after Lock 2, the course of the canal turns away from the road, running just south of the river for nearly half a mile, but returns to the road just before The School Farm. As the canal passes the farm, it has been infilled but beyond the bed is identifiable. A track crosses the bed of the canal and fords the adjacent river with a footbridge accommodating the public footpath. The canal has been eliminated between the track and the railway embankment some 250 yards further on.

The site of Lock 3 is not apparent either from old maps or on the ground but seems to have been between the track and the railway. It is possible that it was nearer the track and in the garden of the bungalow Dunmeads. The railway crosses the course of the canal about 150 yards west of the bridge over the River Dun. On the north side of the railway, water in the canal was diverted into the river which in turn was diverted to pass under the bridge.

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Page created 16 February 2009. Changes to layout and additions to text and pictures published 7 April 2017.

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