Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
I11
Wapenveld
1829

Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal

Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal

The Apeldoorn Canal was built on the initiative of King William I, the ‘canal builder´. Although at first intended as a way of stimulating local industry, it later became a major shipping route. The canal has been closed since 1972 but there are plans in process for making sections of the canal navigable again.

William I, the canal builder
At the start of the 1800s, there were very few roads with hard surfaces and no railways at all. Canals were therefore the most important means of transport. This explains why King William I gave the command to build a 32 km-long canal from Apeldoorn, via Heerde, to the river IJssel at Hattem. He paid for this out of his own pocket as a way of trying to stimulate economic enterprise in and around Apeldoorn. This was not a completely selfless act however, as his summer palace Het Loo would also benefit. The canal was opened in 1829 and some 40 years later, the canal was extended further to the IJssel River at Dieren.

Diminishing interest
From the end of the 19th century, the canal encountered increasing competition from the railway. In 1940, during WWII, all 42 of the moveable bridges were blown up by the Dutch army. After the war, everything was repaired, but motorways and the increasing number of lorries on the road, started to replace the transportation of goods by boat. This is why in 1962, the northern end of the canal was closed. The closure of the southern end followed in 1972.

New lease of life for the Apeldoorn canal
Nowadays, people look back at the closure of the Apeldoorn canal with some regret. Canals, and the romance that surrounds them, are an important part of our cultural history as well as great for recreational boaters. Fortunately, in 2012, the Province of Gelderland allocated a significant sum for the restoration of part of the canal. 

Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
Wapenveld – The Apeldoorn Canal
I11 Apeldoorns Kanaal
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