About us

Since 2010, Liam & Kerry have been operating the working boat “Ariel” on the Bridgewater Canal, supplying both boats and canal side properties with a variety of coal and smokeless fuels along with other products. They worked hard, carrying out a regular and reliable delivery schedule and building up a loyal customer base.

In late 2020, Liam was approached regarding taking on the tenancy of the former Claymoore Narrowboats site at Preston Brook which had been vacant for some time. Successfully securing the site means that we’re now able to expand our business further. It’s our ambition to develop the site into a fully functioning Wharf.

About the Wharf

Preston Brook was a vital location to the inland waterways from the very start, with a wharf first appearing on the site as soon as the canal was dug in the early 1770’s. The original warehouse was soon joined by others, until the site was a eclectic hodgepodge of buildings collectively known as “The Preston Shed” by the locals.

The site was arguably the most important of the area, with a large single cylinder steam engine driving the cranes and hoists until the 1930’s. In 1851, the driver was 28 year old Worsley man John Foulkes. It is most likely on this site that the infamous Christina Collins boarded the Pickford’s fly boat that would ultimately carry her to her death.

The site of the present Midland Chandlers is in the footprint of the delightfully known Dandy Warehouse, and beneath the modern day motorway bridge was a further site apparently known as Greenall’s wharf.