You don't have to go very far these days to read about controversies surrounding self driving cars these days.
(We have had self driving planes for years - and curiously no one gets worked up about that).
But back in the 1700's - James Brindley & John Varley - went to parliament - got the money and started building.
They built a structure that required a completely new style of boat to run on it.
The Chesterfield Canal isn't some kind of ancient relic though. It is popular today with walkers, cyclists, nature enthusiasts, as well as boaters and people who actually live on the canal. See this outside broadcast.
The Chesterfield canal trust have a full program of events including restoration of the waterway.