Canal boats traditionally travel at 4 miles per hour, which roughly equates to the speed of a brisk walking pace, and this significantly determines how the waterway is experienced. This very human pace allows us time to observe a travel route in a way often lost to us in the modern era. It's also a constant thread back to our ancestors, who also would have travelled along the Bridgewater Canal with the same measured progress.
Over one year, photographic artist Simon Buckley captured Salford’s original canal through a series of photographs, films and the written word. Simon is well known for his project ‘Not Quite Light’ which sees him capturing the changing streets of Salford and Manchester in the half light of dawn. For ‘4’ Simon examined the Bridgewater Canal in Salford over a 4 mile stretch as it is now, observing the clues from its past and the reality and relevance of its presence in our lives today. The pictures were taken in the 4 seasons, with each season being assigned a different mile. Every season saw Simon organising an event within the chosen mile.
For winter, Simon explored the Boothstown stretch of the Bridgewater Canal. For spring he was out along the mile of towpath that runs through Worsley.