Perth’s current harbour is at Friarton, about a mile down river, in much deeper water. In 1834, Robert Stevenson and Son, Civil Engineers of Edinburgh recommended a programme of dredging, fording and water diversion to create a permanently navigable channel up river to Perth. A new wet dock was proposed to cope with the increase in traffic which would be created by the improvement works, with a tidal basin extending from Friarton to the South Inch. Approval was given for these ambitious plans and work began in the 1840s. The tidal basin was completed, but it was not long before the project ran into financial difficulties, and the scheme was abandoned when the Town Council debt reached œ70,000. Quays were added in 1898 and 1939, and these facilities are still in use today.
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