Today marks the 125th anniversary of the start of construction of the Manchester Ship Canal.  Work started on 11 November 1887 and when it opened seven years later it was the largest river navigation canal in the world.

Construction of the canal was split into eight sections and first linked Eastham with Ellesmere.  The Eastham Locks were constructed at the mouth of the Mersey (and access to the open sea).  Through looking at the historic maps of this particular location you can see how the landscape radically changed in the space of a few years.

Below is a map extract from the Ordnance Survey map of 1872-74, prior to the Locks' construction:
The first map produced after the construction date was the OS map of 1896-98, and shows the impact on the landscape and river foreshore:
Further improvements were made as shown on the 1936 OS mapping below:
And by the time of the 1956 OS map, the creation of the substantial Queen Elizabeth II inland dock on the west side of the map below:
And how the area looks today from Google Earth:

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