Tim's One Photograph a Day

The Unusual Aynho Weir Lock.

Aynho Weir Lock.

Aynho Weir Lock: One of two lozenge-shaped locks on the Oxford.

One of two lozenge-shaped locks on the Oxford.

The Oxford Canal Company may have been impoverished when constructing the navigation, but it has given rise to one of the best leisure canals today. This is Aynho Weir Lock.

There are two sections of the southern part of this canal that meet up with the River Cherwell. This is the northern of the two. The river crosses the canal on the level just above this lock.

Locks obviously take a canal from one level to another. Each time a boat goes through, it uses an amount of water. This one is shallow, as the ground level does not change much. In some respects, it acts as a flood lock – maintaining the canal level to the south (the right in this shot), regardless of the river level which, of course, can fluctuate.

Of course, when there is a flight of locks (even it over an elongated stretch of canal), this creates a flow. Aynho Weir Lock only has a drop of about a foot (in normal conditions), whereas the next – Somerton Deep Lock – has a fall of some twelve feet.

Originally built in 1790 as a standard lock, it was very soon realised that not enough water was being passed through to Somerton, with the net result the pound (section of water between locks) was having more water taken out than was being put in. Therefore, Aynho Weir Lock was altered to this rather unusual shape to compensate.

The structure is now Grade II Listed.

Photograph Details:

  • Taken: 13 Oct 2017
  • Camera: Olympus OM-D E-M10 MkIIA
  • Lens: Olympus 14-42mm 1:3.5-5.6
  • Focal Length 14mm
  • F/5.6
  • 1/250 Sec
  • ISO 200

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