River Leven

The only outlet of Loch Leven in the Kinross basin, the River Leven flows from the southeast corner of the Loch for a distance of just over 16 miles (26 km) before emptying into the Firth of Forth at Leven. A fall over 90m (300 feet) from source to sea made it attractive to mill-owners, particularly the textile manufacturers of the 18th and 19th centuries. Although its waters are today only used by a solitary paper factory, a distillery and a hydro-electric scheme, there were in the 1820s some 40 mills between Strathenry and Leven. Between 1828 and 1832 the meandering upper course of the river between Loch Leven and Auchmuir Bridge was straightened with the creation of a four-mile long 'cut' or channel. This was part of a scheme designed to reclaim land around Loch Leven and provide a regular supply of water to manufacturers on the river. The water flowing out of Loch Leven into the river passes through sluice gates which are controlled by the River Leven Trustees.

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