After I had left Regent’s Park last Tuesday, I needed to cross the Regent’s Canal in order to catch a bus. The Regent’s canal was built between 1812 and 1820 to link Limehouse, on the Thames, with the Grand Junction Canal at Paddington. It had a financially rocky start and was only just prevented from being converted into a railway line through north London. However, eventually, commercial traffic did begin to flow and over its commercial life, until 1969, timber, coal, building materials and food were carried from London and brought into London via the canal. The junction to the Thames was closed to commercial boats in 1969 as the use of canals wained in favour of road and rail transport and once again the future looked bleak. But the canal is today a leisure venue with walkers and cyclists using the towpaths to travel across London and the waterway itself is used for private boats and boat tours.
The Primrose Hill bridge across the canal was first built in 1842, one of 5 bridges built in Regents Park at that time. It was replaced in 1879. Further refurbishment took place in 1906 and 1930.