James Brindley and the Duke of Bridgewater


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James Brindley and the Duke of Bridgewater

This book ‘James Brindley and the Duke of Bridgewater’ uses eighteenth-century letters, pamphlets, committee minutes, maps, Bridgewater’s account books, and Brindley’s long-lost probate inventory to explore the dynamics of this remarkable business relationship in a rapidly evolving world.

In 1759, Francis Egerton, the 3rd Duke of Bridgewater, turned to coal and canals after a disappointing experience with love. His agent, John Gilbert, introduced him to James Brindley, a Staffordshire Schemer, and the two formed an unlikely partnership that would change the course of the country. However, Brindley soon realized that being associated with a duke could bring about conflict, as rising commerce began to clash with traditional land-owning interests. Despite facing criticism and insults, Brindley remained loyal to Bridgewater, even as he gained wealth and fame and developed a close friendship with canal promoter Josiah Wedgwood.

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Victoria Owens

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Canal Junction Shop

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