Company of Proprietors of the Oakham Canal
Records of the Company of Proprietors of the Oakham Canal: share certificates 1820.
These records are available immediately for research
The navigation to Oakham was first considered in 1785, when a group of people were interested in a line to Melton and beyond. William Jessop was commissioned to undertake a survey although the work was actually done by Robert Whitworth. The Act was passed in 1793 and Christopher Staveley was engineer until 1797, when William Dunn from Sheffield went on to complete the works in 1802. The canal was 15 1/4 miles long from its junction with the Wreake at Melton Mowbray to Oakham with 19 broad locks rising to the summit at Oakham. The canal served Oakham well bringing coal, among other items, and carrying away agricultural produce. It was not a financial success however, and the railway arrived in 1848. It was abandoned 2 years before this as the proprietors had forecast the rapid decline of the canal and agreed a sale to Midland Railway on 19 April 1845. For further information on Oakham Canal see Edward Paget-Tomlinson's 'The Illustrated History of Canals & River Navigations' and Charles Hadfield's 'The Canals of the East Midlands'.
It has not been possible to ascertain any original structure of record-keeping from the small number of records held for this company. The fonds has therefore been arranged in chronological order.