Sandiacre - At Sandiacre Lock
w/e 11 June 2023

All of this week's pictures were taken with a Nikon D3300

Sandiacre Lock

Sandiacre Lock sits about half way along the Erewash Canal between the Cromford Canal at Langley Mill in the north and Trent Lock at Sawley and the River Trent in the south. It also sits at the junction with the Derby Canal which is just north of the lock itself. Access is also possible to the canal via Lock Lane from Sandiacre.
Derby Canal Path

Lock Lane crosses the now disused Derby Canal which was privately owned and despite efforts to keep it open was abandoned in the 1960s and much of it became a landfill site. Since our last visit in 2017 a metal fence has been erected alongside the path which follows the route of the Derby Canal.
Bottom Lock

Also since our last visit, the area inside the fence has been partially excavated to reveal what was the first (or last) lock on the Derby Canal. This was known as Bottom Lock. Like the Cromford Canal there are groups that hope one day the Derby Canal will be restored to its former glory but in both cases it is a long term project.
Beech House

Standing at the side of Lock Lane between the Derby Canal and Sandiacre Lock is the Grade II listed building of Beech House, a two storey red brick building with a slate roof built in the 18th century. At the rear of the building are the remains of a slipway which enabled boats to be removed from the canals for repair work to be undertaken.
Bridge & Sluice

The bridge at the end of Lock Lane over the Erewash Canal is also a Grade II listed structure and has stood the test of time as it was built in 1779. The sluice channel which bypasses the lock can be seen entering the canal to the left.
Lock Gates

The lock itself is also Grade II listed and has gates that are traditionally made of oak or elm with metal reinforced balance beams and metal handrails. As with many other locks this one has concrete semi-circles with stepping stones inserted to aid with opening the lock gates.
Lock Keeper's Cottage

The fourth Grade II listed building around Sandiacre Lock is the Lock Keeper's Cottage which is now the headquarters of the
Erewash Canal Preservation and Development Association, members of which organisation saved the cottage from demolition and turned it into a museum.
Lockside Seats

Opposite the cottage seats have been installed overlooking the lock and when the water level is lowered they provide an ideal spot to view the original ashlared stonework of the lock wall on the western side. The seats were originally part of a five year programme of improvements (starting in 1992) undertaken by Erewash Borough Council in conjunction with British Waterways and Groundwork Erewash Valley. The project also included resurfacing the towpath, installing litter bins and information panels and generally improving the area.
Erewash Canal

The Erewash Canal continues from the lock on its way northwards towards Sandiacre town centre and eventually Langley Mill. It seems incredible today to realise that the whole length of the almost 12 mile canal was constructed in less than two years. Work started in May 1778 and tolls were being collected at the lower end just three months later. Work was completed and the whole canal was navigable by the end of 1779!
Derby Canal

Today an inlet off the Erewash just beyond Sandiacre Lock on the north side leads to a bridge on Lock Lane. This was where the Derby Canal joined the Erewash and it's just beyond the bridge where Bottom Lock has been excavated. For more images from this area also including some from inside the museum see this page from when we last visited in 2017.

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