Altering the course of the River Tees – 1791

A drawing of the plan to alter the River Tees. The caption reads, ‘Design or plan for altering the course of the River Tees bewteen Stockton and Portrack for the improvement of the navigation between those two places. Done by the order of the inhabitants of Stockton, 1791.’

2 thoughts on “Altering the course of the River Tees – 1791

  1. This map was drawn by somebody named Pickernell. I wonder if this was Jonathan Pickernell, the surveyor/engineer who did so much work at Whitby?


  2. The above Plan was put on hold in 1791 then revived in 1802, an Act of Parliament in 1808 authorised the building and the first part, the Mandale Cut opened in 1810. A second, the Portrack Cut, opened in 1831 and shortened the river by three miles. The course of the Old River Tees is still shown on the present day Ordnance Survey map, and there used to be a junction in the Tees Marshalling Yard called Old River Junction with a similarly named signal box.

    It was at the opening of the Mandale Cut in 1810 that Leonard Raisbeck ‘drew to the attention of the merchants and others present, the advantages of a railroad or canal between Stockton and the western parts of the County to transport coal’. This culminated in the opening of the Stockton and Darlington Railway in 1825.


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