Street View comes to the nation’s canal network

31 July 2012

As a direct result of their sponsorship of the recently launched Canal & River Trust, Google has begun photographing the canal network. There are already reports of a tricyle travelling along towpath equipped with multiple cameras in key spots.

Two wonders of Britain’s historic canal network are available to view around the globe thanks to the partnership between the Canal & River Trust and Google.  A 200-year old scheduled monument in Wiltshire, the Caen Hill Lock Flight, together with the Grade I listed World Heritage Site around Pontcysyllte Aqueduct in North Wales, are among the first sections of Britain’s canal network to feature on Google’s Street View.

The two Georgian engineering marvels, which played an important role in the world’s first Industrial Revolution, are already experienced in person by thousands of boaters and towpath visitors each year.  Now, through Street View, they form part of the British landmarks and countryside available to view online.

The towpaths alongside the canals at each location were visited earlier this summer by Google’s Street View Trike. The imagery has gone live from the panoramic photographs taken from the Google Trike of the canals, allowing people from around the world to visit two of Britain’s most scenic locations. Google aims to include more locations on Street View in the near future.

The stretches of canal available to see on Street View are:

  • The Kennet & Avon Canal in Wiltshire between Devizes and Semington – including the Caen Hill flight of 29 locks just outside of Devizes
  • The Llangollen Canal in North Wales between Horseshoe Falls, Llangollen and Chirk Bank – including through the World Heritage Site around Pontcysyllte Aqueduct

Robin Evans, chief executive of the Canal & River Trust which looks after the waterways in England and Wales, comments: “200 years ago, the canal network helped put the great into Great Britain as an industrial nation.  Today the waterways are a haven for both people and wildlife.  Having these canals on Street View helps open them up to millions of people right around the globe who might not otherwise be able to come and experience them.”

Ed Parsons, geospatial technologist at Google UK, said: “We’ve seen a tremendous amount of enthusiasm from British people to get their favourite places onto Street View, we are delighted to add canalside imagery to Street View ahead of a busy summer in the UK. We hope that people from far and wide will be able to admire a large part of the country’s canalside heritage, and plan trips around these new areas.” 

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