Canning Dock is a dock, on the River Mersey, England and part of the Port of Liverpool. It is situated in the southern dock system, connected to Salthouse Dock to the south and Canning Half Tide Dock to the west. The Canning Graving Docks are accessed from the dock.
The dock was opened in 1737 as a protected tidal basin providing an entrance to Old Dock. Having been subsequently enclosed as a wet dock three years earlier, in 1832 it was officially named after the Liverpool MP, George Canning. To the east is the site of Old Dock, built in 1709, this was the world first enclosed dock. Canning Dock would have initially served ships involved in the trans Atlantic slave trade.
Access to the northern half of the dock system was via Georges Dock, George's Basin and into Princes Dock. In 1899, both Georges Basin and George's Dock were filled in and the site is now the Pier Head.
Along with the Albert Dock and others in the immediate vicinity, Canning Dock was abandoned as a commercial shipping facility in 1972 due to the rising cost of dredging and falling numbers in traffic. It was restored in the 1980s and provides access to the Canning Graving Docks, which are part of the Merseyside Maritime Museum.
By March 2009 work was completed on a 22 million extension of the Leeds and Liverpool Canal, providing a further 1.4 miles of navigable waterway.
From Princes Dock, the extension passes the Pier Head and terminates at Canning Dock. The extension includes a small basin at Mann Island, in the vicinity of the Pier Head, and a new lock providing access to Canning Dock.
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