Grantham Canal

The Grantham Canal runs through the north end of the village in an east/west direction on its way between Grantham and Nottingham. These days the canal is a remainder waterway and the Hickling section has changed over the last 100 years into a tranquil wildlife haven.

W0339a The Wharf (1920s)
W0339a The Wharf (1920s)

We are busy collating information for our canal pages and this will follow in due course; in the meantime, please contact us if you have any information or any questions.

Hickling Wharf Building:

The surviving wharf and wharf building was one of two wharfs sited in Hickling; the second one was attached to the Navigation Inn (now Bridge House) to the west of the bridge in Hickling. Dating from the construction of the canal in the 1790s its original form, particularly its distinctive lop-sided sloping roof, is still very much in evidence.

Unfortunately, we don’t have any photographs of the Wharf Building during the working years of the canal; if you can help, please contact us.

Hickling Basin & Wharf Building (MC 1991)
Hickling Basin & Wharf Building (MC 1991)

The building is grade II listed: HICKLING MAIN STREET SK62NE (east side) 6/82 Canal Warehouse 25.9.79 Approx. 50 metres north north west of Wharf House GV II Canal warehouse. Late C18 or early C19. Brick, pantile roof. Rectangular on plan. 2 storeys. Two small windows to each floor, those on ground floor with segmental heads, those on 1st floor breaking into the dentil eaves cornice. All with stone sill. The roof sweeps over a continuous rear outshut whose rear wall has been rebuilt with blockwork. In each gable end is a large doorway above which is a smaller high-level doorway. The Grantham Canal was authorised in 1793. This section from the Trent to Leicestershire border was built by James Green, a surveyor employed by Lord Middleton of Wollaton Hall. The remainder was built by William King, agent to the Duke of Rutland at Belvoir. C Cove-Smith. The Grantham Canal Today, 1974. (Listing NGR: SK6912029438)

Wharf Building – including interiors & large nest (June 2008):

A Black Cat called Min & Hickling Fishermen (1939)

In 1939 the Nottingham Evening Post published the odd story of a cat who had learnt to steal fish from local anglers; some were amused, some were not … Min had to learn to swim quite quickly.

We hope to be able to work with The Grantham Canal Society as time goes on; in the meantime, the Society shared some early photographs of the Grantham Canal in Hickling on their Facebook page, recently:

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The Beauties of the Grantham Canal (1935)

A wonderfully idiosyncratic record of the canal and its villages at the end of the canal’s working life and just before it was remaindered (- although a little fact-checking may be needed?). This article was transcribed from an original article in the Nottinghamshire Guardian by Tony Jackson of the Grantham Canal Society. The name of the original author is not recorded; if you can help us to find a name or a copy of the original article, please contact us.

With our grateful thanks to the Grantham Canal Society for sharing the article and images.

A delightful old waterway is the Grantham Canal, endeared in the hearts of many Nottingham People.  Connecting Grantham with the River Trent at Nottingham, and constructed about the year 1793, it is now disused.  There is a Bill being presented to Parliament by the LNE Railway Company, owners and lessees, to relieve them of responsibility of cleansing and maintaining the canal.  It is being watched very carefully by the Trent Fisheries Board, and local authorities whose domain it passes, in the best interest of the great general public.  Following a sinuous course through the lovely Vale of Belvoir (NE Leics) all along it is charmingly pretty. The resort of anglers, artists, photographers and nature lovers, its varied flora, fauna and aquatic life make a strong appeal.

Beauties of the Grantham Canal 1 Gamston Swing Bridge (GCS)
Beauties of the Grantham Canal 1 Gamston Swing Bridge (GCS)

The old whitewashed bridges, now disappearing with the claims for modern transport for strong concrete and iron structures, have formed the subject of many a study.  There is a peacefulness on the canal which might be more sought after, and a ramble by the banks is a tonic at all seasons of the year, especially to the jaded town dweller. It is very local, but away from the traffic, and here the motor car can be briefly forgotten.  At the same time a car can be very useful to reach certain stretches and points of vantage, where many leafy alcoves can be found for a picnic.

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Hickling Wharf Building and Basin

Black Cat helps the fishermen:

Snowy January (25/1/2021)

Please note: this is a large gallery and may take a little while to load to your screen.

This gallery is from the Wadkin Archives

Country fair Corn Dollies at the Wharf