History Of Brighton And Environs - Online Book

From The Earliest Known Period To The Present Time.

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flood sufficient for vessels of 200 tons to pass up: whereas, at the present time, vessels of the same burthen can only enter at spring tides.
Owing to the evils above mentioned, the Harbour was almost ruined, so much so that in the year 1816 the proprietors were determined upon its improve­ment, and, if possible, to make it a mart for commerce, —the adaptability for which we have above shadowed forth. Energetic steps were at once taken for its improvement, and the proprietors, conjointly with the inhabitants of Shoreham, called in the assist­ance of Mr W. Clegram, who made a survey of the Harbour, and concerted measures for its improve­ment ; thereupon a committee of subscribers was appointed to consider the same, and what steps were necessary for carrying them into execution. W. Chapman, Esq., C.E., on the recommendation of the Honorable Board of Trinity, of Trinity House, also reported on the Harbour, and very forcibly demonstrated the advan­tages that would result from the projected improvement. The Commissioners under the old Act of Parliament and the Committee of Subscribers thereupon appointed Mr Chapman as Chief Engineer in connection with the new undertaking, and on the passing of the Act of Parliament, in 1817, Mr Clegram was appointed Resident Engineer, and for his eminent services he was afterwards selected to fill the responsible post of Harbour Master. William Wigney, Esq., brewer, of Brighton (father of Mr Isaac Newton Wigney, who was returned as one of the first Members for Brighton, under its enfranchise­ment by the provisions of the Reform Act of 1832), was one of its principal promoters, and materially assisted the progress of the Bill, exerting himself to the utmost to facilitate the project.
The work was undertaken by contract, and on the 22nd of April, 1817, amidst a great concourse of spectators,
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