Thus we stand with regard to our Port, and our river navigation upwards is in as bad a condition; neither can it be made much better; for locks and dams are impediments, which, like the tideway, will, in time, accumulate, and render it broad and shallow, by reducing the natural fall or decent onto flat ground, so as to form a step, as it were, at every lock. Now, though I am averse to embankements in the tideway, sure I am, that embankments and contraction is the only method that can be taken to preserve a stream navigation; but even this will not make a river good for passing upwards. The labour of passing against the stream can never be taken away, nor the meandering length shortened. A river stream is the natural drain of a country, and ill formed for navigation; and yet I hope the stream navigation of the river Thames will never be forsaken.
The main points he is making are:
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