In 1755, the scheme to make the river navigable was revived by a clothier (cloth manufacturer) called John Dallaway, who was a veteran of the original 1729 proposals.
Once again there were objections from mill-owners. To avoid the need for locks, an ingenious compromise was proposed involving an early form of containerisation, which Samuel Rudder described:
'in 1759, a scheme offered to obviate all objections respecting the mills, by which it was proposed that all loading should be laid in square chests to be placed in boats, two of which to ply on the river between every two mills, and that at each mill a crane should be erected to shift the chests of loading from one boat to another, through the whole navigation. This scheme was tried for a small part of the way, but it did not succeed'.
Those who wanted the navigation, led by John Dallaway's son William, were not to be deterred.
In 1774, an engineer called Thomas Yeoman was commissioned to investigate what needed to be done. Rather than making changes to the river, he proposed building a new canal.