Claverton Pumping Station

Claverton Pumping Station, alongside the Kennet & Avon Canal, 4 km from the centre of the city of Bath, lifted water from the River Avon to the canal, and is itself operated by water power. The canal, designed by John Rennie (1761-1821) opened from its junction with the River Kennet at Newbury (along which boats could progress to the River Thames at Reading) to the Bristol Avon below Bath in 1810, and the pumping station began operating three years later. The Kennet & Avon Canal was neglected in the late nineteenth and early twentieth century after it passed into the ownership of the Great Western Railway. Pumping at Claverton ceased in 1952, and the British Transport Commission announced plans to close the whole canal in 1958. The Kennet & Avon Canal Trust was formed in 1961 with the object of preserving the canal, and in 1963 it was taken over by the British Waterways Board. Restoration at Claverton began with volunteer labour in 1967, and by 1975 water was again being pumped from the River Avon to the canal. A waterwheel, 5.2 m in diameter and 7.3m wide drives the pumps through a pit wheel 5 m in diameter. Navigation was restored to the Kennet & Avon Canal in 1990, but 2003 is reckoned to be the date when its restoration was completed. There are regular open days at Claverton when visitors can see the machinery in motion.

Claverton Pumping Station
Ferry Lane Claverton
BA2 7BH Bath
United Kingdom
+44 (0) 1225 - 483001