A barge is a simple looking boat with a flat surface and long structure. Barges usually transport goods to different places.
In Great Britain, during the Industrial Revolution, a substantial network of narrow barges was developed from 1750 onwards.
Barges carrying bulk and heavy cargoes continue to be viable. There is no cheaper way to move really heavy loads. Originally, British canals had locks only seven feet (2.1 m) wide, so narrowboats could be no more than 6'10" wide if they were to be able to navigate the system. It was soon realised that narrow locks were too limiting, and later locks were doubled in width to fourteen feet (4.3 m).
A narrowboat is a particular type of canal boat, built to fit the narrow locks of the United Kingdom.
- "All craft great and small". Canal & River Trust. 28 January 2019. Retrieved 21 January 2020.