From the River Aire Navigation to the Yorkshire Ouse
The Selby Canal was built in the 1770s when the Aire and Calder Canal Company became aware of rumours that a canal was to be constructed between Leeds and Selby, which would have taken traffic from the Aire & Calder. The canal was cut from Haddesley to Selby as the lower reaches of the River Aire were difficult to navigate and this was the cheapest option.
The canal was constructed quickly but with a depth of only 3ft 6in. As cargoes increased, the depth was too shallow for larger barges and, by 1826, the canal was losing traffic to the new, nearby section from Knottingley to Goole.