The 3rd Earl of Egremont’s worst investment – or how Chichester got its canal

Chichester was finally connected to the inland waterways network by a branch of the Portsmouth and Arundel Navigation, a venture intended to complete a long-intended inland route from London to Portsmouth obviating the need to put out to sea and be at risk from Napoleon’s navy. The engineer was the great John Rennie, whose last project this was to prove to be.

The 3rd Earl of Egremont not only stood as guarantor for the Exchequer Loan, he invested heavily in the project. Unfortunately, by the time the navigation opened in 1822 the Napoleonic wars were over, the project was overspent, the works badly executed and the expected traffic never materialised. So the poor 3rd Earl not only had to repay the loan, he lost his investment.

In this illustrated talk, local historian Alan Green tells the story of the Portsmouth and Arundel Navigation from its inception through its lingering death to revival in the 1980s as a leisure attraction.

The talk will last up to an hour, with an opportunity to ask questions (via the chat box for our remote audience).

Date: Tuesday 26 April 2022
Time: 7.00pm
Tickets: £8.00 (attending in person, £7.00 for WSAS members). Free (attending remotely via Zoom. Please note that this will be a trial run for live-streaming, so may not therefore be ‘seamless’. Hence it will be a free event and we would welcome feedback after the event).
Booking: To attend in person, phone 01243 753602 to book and pay. To attend online, book via

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