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Clarence Graving Docks
These two graving docks are easily the oldest docks still in service on the Mersey. They date from 1830, although they were modernised as part of a major programme lasting from 1928-33.
They are unusual in Liverpool in being dug partly from rock. Some of the masonry work is of unusually high quality even by Hartley's standards. They have stepped sides and granite barrel runs. The southern graving dock has two chambers.
Salisbury, Collingwood, Stanley, Nelson and Bramley-Moore Docks
These five docks were opened in August 1848 under the £1.4 million programme of works authorised by Parliament in 1844.
The arrangement of a double half-tide entrance with a barge lock is similar to that at Princes except that here there is also a lock from the half-tide dock (Salisbury) to the fully-impounded one (Collingwood).
The system was built at a period of great prosperity and rapidly expanding commercial enterprise, during the Industrial Revolution. This complex is of exemplary design and construction and it was designed and built by Jesse Hartley.
The enclosed docks enable ships to lie alongside the warehouses, unaffected by the rise and fall of the tide and they also reduce opportunities for theft. Stanley Docks act as a link in an integrated transport system by giving access to the Leeds and Liverpool Canal.
Three of the docks lie on an east-west axis and are connected by tidal lock gates. Collingwood Dock is further separated from Stanley Dock by a bridge, which carries Regent Road.
The five docks are all faced with Hartley's trademark "Cyclopean" granite, although the Salisbury Barge Lock is faced in red sandstone. The united water area of this system at its optimum was approximately 14ha, with a linear quay space of nearly 2 miles.