While the Stratford Canal was under construction in the late 18th century (work began in 1793) the British economy ran into trouble due to the pressures of the Napoleonic War, work on the canal was suspended for a number of years before resuming in about 1809 .
Land owner William James helped save the canal project and came up with a number of ideas to save costs in order to complete the Southern section of the canal to reach Stratford. One of the ways to save money was on these lock keepers cottages. They were simply built single storey rectangular buildings with the "barrel" roof made from a series of arches more akin to a bridge than a house. Six were built on the stretch of the canal between Lapworth and Yarningale Common.
|Bucket Lock Cottage near Yarningale Aqueduct|
|Another view of Bucket Lock Cottage|
|Barrel roof cottage at Kingswood|
 J.R Ward, The Finance of Canal Building in Eighteenth-Century England (Oxford University Press, 1974) p. 49