At their successful meeting with David Suchet in Lichfield on Wednesday 11th April, Michael Fabricant promised to find the original Act of Parliament setting up the stretch of canal now known as the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals.
After contacting the House of Commons Library, the original 11 page Act was found stored in St John’s Tower in the House of Lords, copies were made and these have now been sent by Michael Fabricant to the Lichfield and Hatherton Canals Restoration Trust.
The Bill was enacted by King George III on the 28th March 1794. At that time, William Pitt (The Younger) was Prime Minister and the United States of America had been independent from Great Britain for just 11 years. While London was peaceably passing the Act to create a canal in Staffordshire, revolution continued in France. On the 28th March 1794, supporters of Robespierre who conducted a reign of terror using the guillotine to execute anyone who opposed the revolutionary leaders finally took over the Paris commune.