An Act of Parliament was obtained in 1571 during the reign of Elizabeth I to make the river navigable from Stamford to the Sea forever. However it was only in 1620 that the commissioners of sewers held meetings to hear James I decree that the Act be confirmed and a new cut made.
The commissioners then decreed that the toll would be “at every lock they go through, the sum of threepence for and upon the ton”. The owners of the navigation were also empowered to charge wharfage fees.
In 1633, the navigation and the tolls arising from it were leased to Daniel Wigmore, one of the aldermen, for eighty years, at twelve pence a year. The lease continued in private hands until around 1830. The main stipulation being that the watercourse and locks be well maintained - but laterly, they weren’t!
The leaseholders maintained their control over the canal and its income for over 160 years until the 1830’s.
Who commissioned and paid for the canal?
The Stamford Canal << The earliest proper canal in England? <<