Canals of the West Midlands (Birmingham Canal Navigations)
|Fri, 8 Aug 2008 20:43
|Canals of the West Midlands
The 'Birmingham Canals Navigations' dates from 1794 as a new name for the Birmingham and Birmingham and Fazeley Canal Company. The Company acquired other canal companies and by 1865 owned 160 miles of canal of which around 100 miles remain in use.
The gallery is intended to show the various canals and branches, whether still in use or disused through the pictures taken by Geograph contributors.
List of Canals
Wyrley and Essington Canal
Anglesey Branch Canal
Daw End Branch & Rushall Canal
Tame Valley Canal
Birmingham Main Line Canal (see new article)
Birmingham and Fazeley Canal
Worcester and Birmingham Canal (see separate gallery)
Netherton Tunnel Branch Canal
Dudley No 1 Canal and Dudley Canal Tunnel
Dudley No 2 Canal
Stourbridge Canal and Stourbridge Town Branch
Bradley Arm Canal and Bradley Branch
Wednesbury Old Canal and Ridgeacre Branch
Cannock Extension Canal
Walsall Junction Canal (or Birchills Canal)
Oozells Street Loop
Anson Branch Canal (disused)
|Sat, 9 Aug 2008 09:34
|Wyrley and Essington Canal (The Curly Wyrley)
The Parliamentary Act was passed in 1792 and the canal, built by William Pitt, was opened in 1797 to serve the towns and industry developing around the South Staffordshire Coalfield. It was a typical 'contour' canal with a circuitous route to avoid the need for locks hence its nickname 'The Curly Wyrley'.
The canal runs from Wolverhampton via Wednesfield towards the coalfields at Essington and Great Wyrley (with a now disused branch), Bloxwich, Pelsall and Chasewater. A number of links were added to connect with the Staffs & Worcs Canal, Coventry Canal and Walsall town centre. A reservoir was built at Chasewater to top up the water for the series of locks connecting with the Coventry Canal.
The canal starts in Wolverhampton at Horseley Fields Junction with the Birmingham Canal before passing Heath Town and Bentley Bridge.
Sneyd Junction with the abandoned Wyrley and Essington Branch
Birchills Junction for Walsall
Clayhanger and Brownhills
Chasewater via the Anglesey Branch Canal
|Wed, 13 Aug 2008 19:56
The canal runs from Walsall to Ryder's Green Junction with the Wednesbury Old Canal. It was built between 1786 and 1799 and is 7 miles long with eight locks at Ryder's Green. John Smeaton, the engineer for this canal and the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal, is probably better known as the builder of the Eddystone Lighthouse.
The canal starts at the newly refurbished Walsall Town Wharf.
|Mon, 18 Aug 2008 20:55
|Daw End Branch & Rushall Canal
Daw End Branch
The branch connects the Wyrley & Essington Canal at Catshill Junction and the Rushall Canal at Longwood Junction. It was originally constructed in 1800 as a branch of the Curly Wyrley to serve the Hay Head limestone quarries.
The Rushall Canal, completed in 1847, links the Daw End Branch at Longwood Junction with the Tame Valley Canal at Rushall Junction. The top two locks were known locally as 'The Mosses' and the bottom seven 'The Ganzies'.
|Sat, 25 Oct 2008 15:05
|Tame Valley Canal
Links the Walsall Canal at Tame Valley Junction with Rushall Canal at Rushall Junction and Birmingham & Fazeley Canal at Salford Junction in the shadow of Spaghetti Junction.
Built in 1844 the canal runs for 8.5 miles and has 13 locks at Perry Barr.
Tame Valley Junction
|Sat, 6 Dec 2008 20:48
|Birmingham Main Line Canal
The Birmingham Main Line Canal opened between Gas Street Basin and the Staffs & Worcs Canal at Aldersley Junction in 1772. The Engineer was James Brindley. A straighter 'New Main Line' was completed in 1838 to the design of Thomas Telford. This left a number of loops.
Aldersley Junction to Broad Street Basin, Wolverhampton
A flight of 21 locks raises the canal from the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal 132 feet to the 'Wolverhampton Level'.
Broad Street Basin to Horseley Fields Junction
Passing the railway station and Albion Mill before arriving at the first canal junction. The Wyrley & Essington Canal (Curly Wyrley) completed in 1795 winds north into the coal mining areas of Staffordshire.
Horseley Fields Junction to Bradley Canal Junction
Passing through industrial Wolverhampton and Bilston on Brindley's Main Line.
Bradley Canal Junction to Factory Junction
Beyond Bradley Junction the Main Line was straightened by Thomas Telford with cuttings and a tunnel beneath Coseley opened in 1837. Brindley's original canal remains in part as the Bradley Arm.
Factory Junction to Smethwick Junction on Brindley's Main Line
The Brindley 'Old Main Line' cut follows the contours through the Black Country towns, Tipton, Oldbury and Smethwick.
Factory Junction to Smethwick Junction on Telford's New Main Line
Completed in 1838 the New Main Line shortened the route from Wolverhampton to Birmingham.
Smethwick Junction to Old Turn Junction
At Smethwick Junction the Old and New Main Lines rejoin for the final run into Birmingham. At Old Turn Junction it meets the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal.
Old Turn Junction to Gas Street Basin
The derelict canal area has been transformed with Brindley Place, National Indoor Arena, International Convention Centre and canalside apartments off Broad Street.
Gas Street Basin marks the terminus of the canal. Fitting perhaps that the modern pub is named after the canal engineer 'James Brindley'.
|Sat, 20 Dec 2008 15:38
|Birmingham and Fazeley Canal between Old Turn Junction and Fazeley near Tamworth
From Old Turn Junction with the Birmingham Main Line Canal the canal drops down the Farmer's Bridge Locks passsing the centre of Birmingham to Aston Junction.
The canal drops down through the Aston Locks to meet the Tame Valley Canal beneath Spaghetti Junction then passing through Minworth and Curdworth to meet the Coventry Canal at Fazeley Junction.
A short length of canal to the north of Fazeley towards the Trent and Mersey is also known as the Birmingham and Fazeley before reverting to the Coventry Canal name.
|Sun, 21 Dec 2008 10:31
|Birmingham and Warwick Canal
Opened in 1799 between Birmingham and Saltisford Basin, Warwick. This became the main route to London and was renamed as the Grand Union Canal in 1929 when major improvements and widening works were carried out.
The canal starts at Salford Junction with the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal close to Spaghetti Junction before passing through Saltley and the eastern side of Birmingham. The canal was widened by the Grand Union as far north as Sampson's Wharf.
The canal passes out through Solihull and Knowle to Kingswood Junction with the Stratford Canal.
Beyond Shrewley Tunnel the canal passes down the twenty one lock flight Hatton Locks to arrive in Warwick.
|Sun, 4 Jan 2009 11:43
|Netherton Tunnel Branch Canal
Dudley Port Junction to Windmill End Junction linking Thomas Telford's Birmingham
Canal(New Main Line) to the Dudley Canal via the Netherton Tunnel.
Netherton Tunnel at 3027 yards(2768m) was the last canal tunnel to be built. A celebration was held in 2008 to celebrate its opening in 1858. It was intended to relieve pressure on the nearby Dudley Canal Tunnel. The tunnel was originally lit by gas throughout its length and later by electricity. There are seven air shafts.
Cobb's Engine House and Windmill End Junction
|Mon, 12 Jan 2009 20:55
|Dudley No 1 Canal
The canal has a junction with the Stourbridge Canal at Black Delph and passes through the Dudley No 1 Canal Tunnel to join the Birmingham Canal.
The canal rises through the eight lock Delph flight
passing the Merry Hill Waterfront development on the former Round Oak steelworks site
and former industrial areas
to reach Parkhead Junction with the Dudley No 2 Canal and Parkhead Locks.
The canal enters the Dudley Canal Tunnel emerging beside the Black Country Living Museum. The Dudley Canal Tunnel is 2942yds long and was completed in 1791. As well as providing a north south link through the Rowley Hills it allowed access and transport for the quarrying of limestone in huge caverns beneath Castle Hill and the Wren's Nest. The canal tunnel was closed in 1962 amidst much protest from canal users: it reopened in 1973 as a result of work by the Dudley Canal Tunnel Preservation Society and Dudley MBC. There are no towpaths, boat trips are run in an electric boat to view the caverns and rock formations.
Dudley No 2 Canal
Built in 1792 to provide a link from the Dudley No 1 Canal at Park Head Junction with the Birmingham and Worcester Canal at Selly Oak. The southern section beyond Coombeswood, Halesowen was abandoned following the collapse of the Lapal Tunnel in 1917.
Windmill End Junction with the Netherton Tunnel Branch Canal
through Gorsty Hill Tunnel to Halesowen.
Beyond here the canal is un-navigable and the Leasowe Embankment is currently drained.
The collapsed narrow Lapal Tunnel at over 2 miles long is unlikely to be restored but there are ambitious plans for a surface route 'up and over' to link with the Worcester and Birmingham Canal at Selly Oak.
Fragments of the route survive in Selly Oak.