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Where the road crosses the footpath at the upper angle of the weavers' row of houses on the Allesley land, a cutting is to be made of two feet six inches; the footpath must be covered on each side, and dressed with gravel, so as to give a good and commodious passage to and from the road. Where the road crosses the Chapel Lane there is to be four feet of filling; the lane must be embanked on each side to the height of the road, and have inclinations each way of one in sixteen; the side slopes are to be two horizontal to one perpendicular, and the top surface when finished to be twenty-one feet wide; both these side roads or lanes are to be fenced in the same manner as the main line of road, and to be coated with eight inches of broken sandstone for the width of eighteen feet, and with gravel for the width of eighteen inches on each side, to be eight inches deep where it joins the broken stone and six inches at the sides.

Where the road crosses the lane between Mr. Booth's and Mr. Carter's land, a filling is to be made of two feet nine inches. The same must be embanked up to the road on each side; to have inclinations each way of one in sixteen, and to be twenty-one feet wide on the surface, with slopes of two horizontal to one perpendicular; to be covered with five inches thick of pebbles, eighteen feet wide, and gravelled eighteen inches at each side; the gravel to be three inches thick next the broken stone, and six at the sides; no fencing will be necessary on these side roads.

The second Schedule referred to in and by the foregoing Agreement.

Sir,

I hereby engage to execute the works of the proposed improvement of the Holyhead Road at Coventry, according to the plan, section, and specification, for the sum of ten thousand and seventy-six pounds sixteen shillings and sixpence. I am, Sir,

Your obedient servant,

Thomas Baylis.

£ s. d.

First lot - - - 4,140 0 0
Second lot - - 5,936 16 6

Total - - 10,076 16 6

To Alexander Milne, Esq., 1, Whitehall, London.

Signed, sealed, and delivered by the above-named Thomas Baylis, in the presence of

John Macneill. Thomas Baylis.

Signed, sealed, and delivered by the above-named John Kershaw, in the presence of

John Macneill. John Kershaw.

Signed, sealed, and delivered by the above-named Alexander Milne, in the presence of

John Macneill. Alexander Milne.

234

CHAPTER IX.

IMPROVING OLD ROADS.

M.B. Telford gives the following account of the state of the turnpike roads in 1819, in his evidence before the committee of the House of Commons on the highways of the kingdom : —" With regard to the roads of England and Wales, they are in general very defective, both as to their direction and inclinations; they are frequently carried over hills, which might be avoided by passing along the adjacent valleys; the shape or cross sections and drainage of the roads are quite as defective as the general directions and inclinations; there has been no attention paid to constructing good and solid foundations; the materials, whether consisting of gravel or stones, have seldom been sufficiently selected and arranged; and they lie so promiscuously upon the roads as to render it inconvenient to travel upon them, and to promote their speedy destruction. The shape of the road or cross section of the surface is frequently hollow in the middle; the sides encumbered with great banks of road dirt, which have accumulated in some places to the height of six, seven, and eight feet; these prevent the water from falling into the side drains, and also throw a considerable shade upon the road, and are great and unpardonable nuisances. The materials, instead of being cleaned of the mud and soil with which they are mixed in their native state, are laid promiscuously on the road: this in the first place creates an unnecessary expense of carriage of soil to the road, and afterwards nearly as much in removing it, besides inconvenience and obstruction to travelling."

The committee of 1819, by attributing in their report the imperfect state of the roads to the negligent and culpable conduct of the trustees who had the management of them, roused the attention of the public to the subject, and thus led to the introduction of an improved system of management. But although a considerable change for the better has taken place since 1819, many of the defects described by Mr. Telford still remain; and all that has been done towards their removal falls far short of what ought to have been done to put the turnpike roads into complete order.

In improving old roads, nearly the same objects should be attended to as in making new ones; such, for instance, as the direction, the longitudinal inclinations, the breadth, form, and hardness of the surface, the drainage, and the fencing.

For the purpose of ascertaining in what respect an old road is complete or defective in these points, the following queries have been prepared. The answers that can be given to them will at once show what is the state of a road.

1st. Is the direction of the road in the shortest line that can be found without having to pass over steep hills or other obstacles?

2d. What are the rates of inclination on the hills? In ascending towards a height, or ridge of country, that must be crossed, has the road one gradual ascent, or has it one or more descents, thus making two or more hills instead of one hill?

3d. What is the breadth of the road? Is it every where exactly the same? Is it defined by side channels having along them curb stones or borders of grass sods?

4th. Are the channels on each side of the road on the same level? Is the convexity of the surface uniformly the same in every part along the whole length of the road?

5th. Is there a footpath? What is the height of it above the side of the road? What is its breadth? Of what materials is it composed?

6th. Is there any waste land between the road and the fences of the road? In what state is it?

7th. Is the surface of the road higher than that of the adjacent fields?

8th. Of what materials does the crust of the road consist? What is the depth of them in the centre of the road, at a distance of five feet on each side of the centre and at the sides?

9th. Are there sufficient drains for carrying off all rain and other water?

10th. Are the fences low? Are they raised on ground of the same level on both sides of the road? Are they of the same height on both sides, and parallel to each other?

The answers which can be given to these queries will show what the defects are of any road to which

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