The Stover Canal can be found in South Devon, to the west of Kingsteignton. It runs for nearly 2 miles from north of Teigngrace to the outskirts of Newton Abbot, having been built by James Templer of Stover Lodge between 1790 and 1792. The first barge transported clay and other materials (including granite from Dartmoor) between Teignbridge and the sea at Teignmouth on March 4th 1790. The canal was further extended North to Ventiford beyond Teigngrace.
As part of a visit with our U3A Local History group, my wife and I took part in a guided walk along the canal, led by a member of the Stover Canal Trust, which works with local councils and other interested parties to preserve the line of the canal and to restore it as an amenity for the local community. Some lengths of the canal towpath form part of the Templer Way, an historic trail which links the canal, the granite tramway and other legacies of the Templer family.
The guide gave a fascinating insight into the history of that era and the work of those involved not only in building the canal but in the on-going restoration of the locks and other parts of it. The Trust is of course dependent on donations and funding from a range of sources, which is why they run these walks. If you’re interested in this aspect of history, I can thoroughly recommend a visit to the Stover Canal website, and a trip to see the remains of the canal and the work that has been done so far to restore it. It also makes a good and very pleasant walk on a fine day!
“Where to find this canal”:http://www.stovercanal.co.uk/map.htm