Sennar Dam

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The Sennar Dam and Blue Nile, photo by crew of Discovery, STS-29, March 15, 1989

The Sennar Dam is an irrigation dam on the Blue Nile near the town of Sennar in the Al Jazirah region of Sudan. The dam is 3,025 metres (9,925 ft) long and has a maximum height of 40 metres (130 ft). It was designed by the Scottish engineer Sir Murdoch MacDonald,[1] begun in 1914 and completed in 1925 by the British contractor S Pearson & Sons.


Work on the dam started in 1914, but was almost immediately interrupted by the outbreak of World War One. Work recommenced in 1919, the contractors being the Sudan Construction Company, who carried on the work until 1921 when work was stopped for a second time as it became clear that the estimated cost of the scheme would be considerably exceeded.[2]

In 1922, with further funds obtained, six British firms were invited to tender to complete the dam and build the connecting canal system. S Pearson and Sons was successful, and contracted to complete the dam by July 1925.[2] Oswald Longstaff Prowde was resident engineer and John Watson Gibson was site agent.[3] Work began in December 1922 and the dam was finished in May 1925.[3]


  1. ^ Prowde, Oswald Longstaff (1926). "The Gezira Irrigation Scheme, Including the Sennar Dam on the Blue Nile". Minutes of Proceedings of the Institution of Civil Engineers. 222: 80.
  2. ^ a b Winchester, Clarence (1938). "Conquest of the Desert". Wonders of World Engineering. pp. 289–295. Retrieved 4 January 2015.
  3. ^ a b "The Sennar Dam and the Gezira Irrigation Scheme" (PDF). The Engineer. 26 September 1924. Archived from the original (PDF) on 4 January 2015. Retrieved 4 January 2015.[page needed]

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Coordinates: 13°32′50″N 33°38′07″E / 13.54722°N 33.63528°E / 13.54722; 33.63528