Aqueduct Lock

 

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AQUEDUCT LOCK. 

 

 

Lock State Date Length Length - Working Distance Width Fall Removed or bypassed
Aqueduct Lock Built 1768     13' 6'' 5' 5'' 1922
Aqueduct Lock (Brick and timber) Report 1917     13' 6''    
Aqueduct Lock Rebuilt 1922 90' 0'' 87' 0'' 16' 0'' 5' 6''
 

 

 

This lock was authorised 4.6.1768 and the aqueduct two weeks later (see above). Both were built by Mr Cooper, starting in October 1768. (NA Rail 845/4)

 

On 12.1.1780 it was “Resolved that the following Locks be repaired with all convenient speed Viz. … The Aqueduct Lock at Cheshunt Millstream, Waltham Lock, Rammey Mead Lock, Enfield Lock, Enfield Half Lock, Piggotts Lock, Cooks Lock, Boltons Lock, Stonebridge Lock, Tottenham Lock, Lee Bridge Half Lock, Hackney Marsh Brick Cistern Lock And It Is Ordered that the Surveyor do repair the same as he shall find them absolutely necessary” (NA Rail 845/5)

 

The reason for the name is self-evident, but there is a story behind it.  When the Waltham Cut was commenced in 1767, the canal was built on an embankment from Kings Weir up to the aqueduct which spans the Cheshunt Mill Stream.  Cheshunt Mill had the right to take water from the River Lea and the millstream, called the Small River Lea, had existed since before Domesday. The new route of the Navigation could not interrupt the flow of the millstream, necessitating the aqueduct.  There is a wry footnote to this.  In 1805, The Royal Gunpowder Mills at Waltham Abbey needed to protect and possibly increase their own water supply, so they bought Cheshunt Mill and closed it down! 

 

The lock was called Cheshunt Aqueduct and Cheshunt Mill Aqueduct until  1870, when the name was abbreviated to simply Aqueduct Lock.

 

The area around the old 13' 6'' wide lock is shown on this plan from 1838, with the old Cheshunt Mill Stream marked as "Government Water"

 

LMA ACC 2423/P747

 

 

The enlarged plan above shows the domestic layout, with two semi-detached cottages.  Interestingly the privy was built out over the ditch!

 

26.10.1877  “Nothing required to house here” (NA Rail 845/21)  but on 20.4.1883, the lock house was insured for £150 (NA Rail 845/23)

 

28.6.1895  “a new Lock House be at once built at Aqueduct Lock on the towing path side and that the tender of Mr Thomas Pollitt of Waltham Abbey for £290….be accepted.” (NA Rail 845/28)

 

12.7.1895  “be built on the east side of the lock” (NA Rail 845/28)

 

 LMA ACC 2423/P1892

 

 The site plan for the new lock built in 1922, showing the outline of the lock keeper's house.

 

 

 

Aqueduct Lock Weir keeper’s house in foreground, the remains of the lock keepers house beyond.

 

 

 

A separate cottage was provided for the keeper of the weir controlling the Small River Lea at Aqueduct Lock

 

However, the lock keeper’s house was burnt down in 1975 and never rebuilt. Its site is marked by the overgrown foundations to the south of the weir keeper’s house. The usable bricks from the gutted building were loaded on the British Waterways’ barge Musgrave, taken upstream to Dobbs Weir and re-used in the building of the new lock house there.

                                                                                

 

Aqueduct Lock

Census/Date

Name

Title

Wife

Location given by enumerator/Comments

Source Reference

1972 - 1974 Walter (Bill) Newton Lock keeper Son of Arthur Newton of Kings Weir. Moved to Stanstead Lock
c.1.1962 Albert Ernest Todd   Transferred to Sheering Mill Lock Mick Welsh
7.12.1953 Albert Ernest Todd Labourer Appointed at £7.15.4;Last recorded r.o.p. £8.3.7 plus on call allowance of 5/- n.d. LCB Records
4.4.1953 Walter Charles Eaton Lock keeper Left LCB Records

6.10.1947

W C Eaton

Lock keeper

Appointed ex Relief Lock keeper at £4.5.0.  9.6.1948 to £4.17.0. 2.8.1950 to £4.19.6.

NA Rail 845/128  LCB Records

6.10.1947

A Field

Lock keeper

Transferred to Feildes Weir Lock

NA Rail 845/128

4.5.1942

Alfred Field (36)

Lock keeper

Appointed at 54/- and uniform

NA Rail 845/126

6.2.1942

R Wheeler

Lock keeper

Transferred to Lea Bridge Weir

NA Rail 845/126

10.4.1938

R Wheeler

Lock keeper

£1.10.0 to £1.12.0

NA Rail 845/122

8.4.1938

Reginald Wheeler (35)

Lock keeper

Appointed  at £1.10.0.per week and house and uniform

 

NA Rail 845/122

11.3.1938

W Gosford (46)

Lock keeper

Resigned after 7 years service

NA Rail 845/122

1.4.1935

W Gosford

Lock keeper

£1.8s to £1.10s per week

NA Rail 845/119

20.2.1931

William Gosford

Lock keeper

Ex Naval PO, appointed at 28/-per week with uniform

NA Rail 845/115

14.11.1930

J Obee

Lock keeper

Retired with pension of 10/- per week

(Died 7.5.1944 (86))

NA Rail 845/114

NA Rail 845/126

31.10.1930

J Obee (72)

Lock keeper

14 years service 28/-per week and house.  Wife has pension

NA Rail 845/114

26.11.1920

John Obee

 

Re-appointed

NA Rail 845/47

“John Obee….again examined…and certified that he had so far improved both in intellect and body that he was capable of doing work” (NA Rail 845/47)

26.11.1920

1.1.1921

J Porter (71)

Lock keeper

Died 15.11.1920

Widow (69) granted 10/- per week pension until OAP then 7/- per week

(Widow died 9.12.1933)

NA Rail 845/47 and 48

 

NA Rail 845/118

30.6.1920

John Porter (70)

Lock keeper

Ex Limehouse Constable, appointed at 27/- per week

NA Rail 845/47

11.6.1920

J Obee (61)

Lock keeper

Transferred to Limehouse as Asst Collector

NA Rail 845/47

14.11.1919

J Obee

Lock keeper

29/- + house, garden, and uniform

NA Rail 845/46

5.10.1917

J Obee (59)

Lock keeper

Appointed

NA Rail 845/44

5.10.1917

W Symonds

Lock keeper

Gave fortnight's notice that he would resign to return to his old employment on steel construction works.

NA Rail 845/44

1.12.1916

William Symons

Lock keeper

£2 war bonus

NA Rail 845/43

3.11.1916

William Symons (44)

Lock keeper

Son of  present Lock keeper, married 2 children, appointed at 23s per week with house and uniform. Good reference from previous employers Lindsay's Paddington Iron Works Ltd (19 years)

NA Rail 845/43

LMA ACC 2423/15

20.10.1916

Samuel D Symonds (66)

Lock keeper

Now suffering nervous debility and rupture, requests pension. Granted 10/- per week plus bonus of 2/- per week during the war.

13.7.1923 Died aged 73

NA Rail 845/43

 NA Rail 845/107

4.3.1915

S Symonds

Lock keeper

+2/- per week

NA Rail 845/42

28.2.1913

S Symonds

Lock keeper

 Wages increased by 1/- per week

NA Rail 845/40

2.4.1911 Samuel Symons (60) Lock keeper Emma
Aqueduct Lock Wormley Broxbourne Hertfordshire
 
RG14PN7458 RG78PN360 RD132 SD8 ED8 SN213

9.7.1910

Symons

Lock keeper

Appointed ex Old Ford

NA Rail 845/37

9.7.1910

George Biscoe

Lock keeper

Transferred to Hertford Lock

NA Rail 845/37

3.5.1910

George Biscoe

Lock keeper

Illness. Spent 3 weeks in Hertford Convalescent Home.

NA Rail 845/37

15.5.1903

George Biscoe

Lock keeper

Appointed, transferred from Picketts Lock at 20/- pw

NA Rail 845/31 and LMA ACC 2423/007

3.4.1903  “J Piper, who had been 20 years Lock keeper and Collector at this lock, was not able to continue his duties owing to an accident to his knee a few months ago and cannot get around without a stick. He is 68 years of age. Wages 23/- per week and a house. ….be allowed the sum of 10/- per week.  (NA Rail 845/31).  Piper died 7.10.1907.  (NA Rail 845/34). 1.11.1907 Widow (73) granted 5/- per week. (NA Rail 845/34)  Widow Ellen Piper died 2.12.1912 (NA Rail 845/39)

31.3.1901

John Piper (66)

River Toll Collector

Ellen

Aqueduct Lock, Turnford

Cheshunt/5/28

5.8.1898

J Piper

Lock keeper

Raised from 20/- to 23/- per week

NA Rail 845/28

5.4.1891

Unoccupied

 

 

Lock House

Cheshunt/7/19

12.10.1888

Piper

Lockkeeper

Raised from 18/- to 20/- per week

NA Rail 845/25

8.4.1892   J Piper collects about £350 pa, gives no security and the Board never requires any at this lock (NA Rail 845/26)

6.7.1883

John Piper

Lock keeper

 Appointed at survey

NA Rail 845/23

20.4.1883

J. Piper

Lock keeper

New employee.  18/- per week

NA Rail 845/23

15.10.1882

William Freeman

Lock keeper

Drowned this day  (see below). His funeral expenses were paid and  Elizabeth Freeman, sister, was allowed a gratuity of £15

NA Rail 845/23

At the inquest no evidence proving how it occurred but the supposition is that he was pushing the upper gates to with his hitcher after an upward barge had passed in order to draw off the still according to the rules and that the hitcher slipped off the gate and he was pitched into the lock striking his temple on the gate and stunning him. He was a most steady and trustworthy man and I think the most attentive to his duties of any lock keeper on the river.  He had been in our employ some 4 years or more - he leaves no family being unmarried, but an elder sister lived with him and was entirely dependant on him for support and any assistance you would be pleased to grant her would be most gratefully received. (J Child) LMA ACC 2423/001

6.5.1881

William Freeman

Lock keeper

Ex Limehouse (he is a fair scholar and well fitted for the work - J Child)

NA Rail 845/22

LMA ACC 2423/001

6.5.1881

Jonathan Wood

Lock keeper

Transferred to Waltham Common (not up to work here - J Child)

NA Rail 845/22

L MA ACC 2423/001

4.4.1881

Jonathan Wood (56)

Lock keeper

Emily

Turnford, Aqueduct Lock

Cheshunt/7/23

18.7.1878

Jonathan Wood

Lock keeper

Appointed

NA Rail 845/21

20.7.1877

Phillips

Lock keeper

*see below

NA Rail 845/21

“Phillips the Lock keeper, recently convicted for receiving Coals valued at 2d from a barge belonging to Miss Stocks….begged that he might retain his place.  He had frequently lent the Bargemen wood for their fires and in this instance in particular the Bargeman on the return journey handed him the coal in repayment, and he unwittingly accepted it.  Resolved that he be further suspended.”

“21.7.1877 Reinstated to his post as Lock keeper”

2.3.1877

Phillips

Lock keeper

Appointed at 18/- per week

NA Rail 845/20

16.2.1877

William King

Lock keeper

Giving up job due to illness

NA Rail 845/20

27.10.1876

William King

 

Lock keeper

Appointed at 18/- per week

NA Rail 845/20

29.9.1876

Henry Hurst

Lock keeper

Giving up job due to illness

NA Rail 845/20

24.12.1875

Henry Hurst

Lock keeper

Appointed at 16/- per week

NA Rail 845/20

10.12.1875

James Foster

Lock keeper

Transferred to Tottenham

(Date of appt n.k.)

NA Rail 845/20

2.4.1871

John Wackett (41)

Lock keeper

Betsy

Aqueduct Lock House

Cheshunt/7/22

12.3.1868

Richard Crawley

Lock keeper

Appointed at 18/- per week

Transferred to Tottenham (date n.k.)

NA Rail 845/16

12.10.1867

James Newell

 

Transferred to Limehouse

NA Rail 845/16

16.7.1863

Thomas Newell

Lock keeper

Wages “raised to 18/- per week including coal and all other perquisites”

NA Rail 845/15

8.4.1861

James Newell (24)

Collector

Harriett

Aqueduct Lock

Cheshunt/6/21

8.4.1861

John Wackett (32)

Agr Labourer

Betsy

Cheshunt, Aqueduct Lock

Cheshunt/6/22

19.4.1860

Newell

Lock keeper

6d less wages per week due to provision of garden

NA Rail 845/15

21.10.1854 Thomas Newall Lock keeper 18/- per week NA Rail 845/14

16.7.1853

Thomas Newall

Lock keeper

18/- per week

NA Rail 845/14

16.10.1852

Thomas Newall

Toll collector & Lock keeper

Advance of  2/- per week. (paid below average and a faithful servant)

NA Rail 845/14

30.3.1851

Thomas Newell (38)

Toll collector

Ann

Lock House

Mx/Cheshunt/1k/21

16.2.1847

Thomas Newell

Lock keeper

Appointed  in place of John Beavan

NA Rail 845/12

19.1.1847

John Beavan

Lock keeper

Drowned.  Widow awarded 5/- per week

NA Rail 845/12

17.3.1846

John Beavan

Lock keeper

Appointed at 16/- per week in place of George Cass

NA Rail 845/12

7.6.1841

George Cass (60)

Collector of Tolls

Ann

Aqueduct House

He/Cheshunt/3/8

20.4.1841

George Cass

 

24/- per week

NA Rail 845/12

5.1840 John Brown Foreman of Stoves "he was the first occupant of the cottage" and "this occupant is a married man,& has the cottage free of rent, as hios wife is a kind of Watch on bargemen taking more water than is necessary" WO44/133
1.10.1839 John Brown   Income of £65.13.7. Still entitled to a cottage "for the family to look after the water WO54/623
1.10.1839 John Goats Saltpetre Refiner Now a widower.  May have moved away (1841 Census: lodging in Powder Mill Lane, Waltham Abbey) WO54/623
20.12.1834 John Goats   Living on Aqueduct Island. Rent for the cottage was £5.4.0 per annum Supp 5/237
20.12.1834 John Brown (57)   Living on Aqueduct Island. Rent for the cottage was £5.4.0 per annum Supp 5/237
1.4.1834 John Goats (60)   Still living in cottage WO54/593

1.4.1833

1.10.1831

1.4.1829

John Brown   Still had cottage "to look after the water"

WO54/587

WO54/545

WO54/566

1.10.1827 John Goats (54)   Still living in cottage "so his family could look after the water" WO54/558
1.10.1825 John Brown (49) Foreman of Stoves "had a cottage for his family to look after the water"  
1.4.1823 John Brown   Still entitled to a cottage owned by the Board WO54/542
1.10.1822 John Goats Saltpetre Refiner Living in cottage owned by the Board at Lock "so that his wife could look after the water" WO54/542
1.10.1822 John Brown Foreman of Corning House "Had rent-free cottage for his family to look after the waters" Supp 5/233
         
 

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