About the River Dee Branch
The Shropshire Union Canal is linked to the River Dee in Chester by a short branch canal; ¼ mile long with three locks plus the river lock. The original Chester Canal linking Nantwich to the River Dee opened in 1779 but suffered difficulties when Beeston staircase locks suffered a collapse in 1787. The Ellesmere Canal boosted the fortunes of the Chester Canal with connections to the River Mersey at Ellesmere Port in 1797 and at Hurleston, in 1805. The current connection to the River Dee, useable at all states of tide, replaced the original at the bottom of Northgate Locks when Chester Basin was constructed as part of the Wirral line.
[The photo shows the River Dee Lock, which locks down from the Branch to the River Dee – by John McKaigue]