You are now standing at Drungewick Lock and the Winding hole beyond the lock marks the end of the restored section of canal through Loxwood.
If you look at this photograph from 1979 you can see just how much clearance was required before the lock structure could be inspected and restoration begun. The restoration of the bridge and lock chamber was carried out in 1989 – 1991 but the first boat to reach the lock following restoration wasn’t until 2003 following the building of Drungewick Lane Bridge and the aqueduct.
Did you know locks are wider at the top and don’t have a flat bottom ?
The lock sides are built in the form of a shallow arch and are not vertical, they have a ‘batter’, i.e. they are wider at the top than the bottom and the bottom is an inverted shallow arch, known as an ‘invert’. These three elements resist the thrust of the surrounding soil and prevent the lock chamber from collapsing.
What is a Winding Hole ?
This a wider section of canal built to allow boat to turn (or Wind) around. Winding is pronounced “Win-Ding”.
The origin of the word “Winding”
The word is commonly believed to derive from the practice of using the wind to assist with the turn. The Old English word for turn - "Windan", (pronounced with a short I (as in windlass, a handle for winding. Old English was in use up to and including the 18th century when the canals where built. Much UK canal terminology comes from spoken rather than written tradition and from bargees who did not read or write. It is also possible that the word has a similar derivation to that of the windlass, which derives from the Old Norse "vinda" and "ás".
Can I see more of the canal heading south ?
The original route of the canal heading south from here is in private land with no public footpaths. A little further south you can explore the more of the canal using the Wey-South Path. The shop on our web-site features a guide to the Wey South Path.
Where can I find other Information Posts ?
A list of all Information posts and links to the information pages is on our web-site: Information Posts | The Wey & Arun Canal Trust (weyarun.org.uk)