The Kennet and Avon Canal Trust

Crofton Boiler

The Kennet and Avon Canal Trust is the charity that saved the Kennet & Avon Canal which runs from Bristol to Reading.


“Now we work to promote the canal to the benefit of all its users, the communities through which it passes, and its heritage. Crofton Pumping Station was completed in 1809 to supply water to the highest point of the canal.  The station is a rare survivor of the technology employed by British engineers to drain mines and supply towns and cities with water all over the world.  We have recently undergone National Lottery Heritage Fund supported conservation and visitor facility improvement work. Crofton stayed in steam until 1958 despite the canal becoming derelict after WWII.  Water was still needed for farm and railway locomotive supply.  Our 1812 Boulton & Watt steam powered beam engine is the oldest working beam engine in the world that is still in its original location and capable of performing the task for which it was installed.  Steam was raised for the first time under preservation in April 1970, when the 1812 engine moved for the first time in 12 years.”