The Strabane Canal
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Since ancient times, the River Foyle has been an important navigation route and central to the development of Strabane and the wider region. In 1796 the commercial importance of Strabane was enhanced further with the opening of the canal . At a time when travel by road was difficult this had the effect of creating a more accessible link between Strabane town centre and international markets. Coal, timber, steel and iron were among the items imported while a wide range of agricultural produce (wheat, flax , butter , eggs and beef) was exported. Though just over four miles long, the canal’s strategic location enabled it to bring considerable prosperity to the area in the first quarter of the nineteenth century. However, in 1847 a railway opened from Derry to Strabane, and a network of connecting line soon developed. The effect on canal trade was dramatic, and its decline inevitable.
Located off Greenlaw Road , Ballymagorry