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The canal forms the ‘Main Line’ of the Birmingham Canal Navigations or BCN. But the Birmingham Canal itself is a key link in the centre of the national system and the New Main Line is well used as a through route. This was completed by 1790 and the 3 remaining Smethwick locks were also duplicated with a parallel flight to reduce traffic delays. A further connection, now lost, had been created where the Island Line cut across the Tipton Green Branch, dating from 1809. The Ridgacre Branch was cut off by a new road in 1995. Birmingham Canal Old Line by Tricia Neal geograph for square SP0586. Showing images tagged with Birmingham Canal Old Main Line tag. An approximate indication of the old level can be gained from looking over Brasshouse Bridge to where the New Main Line and Old Main Line are overshadowed by an embankment. None of the original tollhouses survive but a replica has been built at Smethwick Top Lock. As part of his improvements, Telford also built the Rotten Park or Edgbaston reservoir in 1826 which fed both into the Soho Loop and by a long feeder into the end of the Engine Arm. Are you ready to ramble? Dedicate it in celebration of a loved one today, Make a difference to the wellbeing of your community, We are caring and open and aim to put our supporters at the heart of everything we do. But by the 1950s traffic was much reduced and several sections of the BCN were closed including the Wednesbury Oak Loop from Bradley to Bloomfield Junction (1955), the Oldbury Loop (1960), much of the Wednesbury Old Canal (1960), Bradley Locks (1961), Tipton Green & Toll End Communication (1966) and many of the shorter branches. However, about 100 miles of the original 160 miles of the BCN system survive, including all the New Main Line and much of the original route on the Old Main Line. Join waterways-lovers across Britain to campaign to protect and restore rivers and canals. Various modifications and improvements quickly followed; the section between Smethwick and Spon Lane was originally built on a level of 491 feet above sea level, with six locks at Smethwick and three leading down to the 473 feet level at Spon Lane. Brindley’s originally surveyed route had apparently continued the Birmingham level via Tipton and Bilston right through to Wolverhampton, but this was raised 20 feet to the present ‘Wolverhampton level’ at 473 ft to take the route closer to Oldbury and to Dudley with its limestone and ironstone mines. The canal is a great base for exploring central Birmingham. It marks the junction between Brindley's canal, Telford’s Main Line canal routes and the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal. They commissioned the canal engineer James Brindleyto propose a route. Click the red 'i' icon in the bottom right hand corner to expand the key. This website uses cookies to improve your experience while you navigate through the website. To find details such as moorings, boaters' facilities and access points, you'll need to zoom to the map fully. The Black Country Living Museum is a great family day out – a recreation of a 19th-century industrial town, including canal docks and boat trips. These cookies do not store any personal information. Brindley’s originally surveyed route had apparently continued the Birmingham level via Tipton and Bilston right through to Wolverhampton, but this was raised 20 feet to the present ‘Wolverhampton level’ at 473 ft to take the route closer to Oldbury and to Dudley with its limestone and ironstone mines. The Newhall Branch beyond Cambrian Wharf is now built over, as is a later (1812) branch from this which included a tunnel and a lock up to Gibsons Wharf. We are Roving Traders travelling the inland waterways on our narrow-boat Islonian trading as Flavoursfloat The Coffee Boat. The Wyrley & Essington Canal opened in 1794 from Horseley Fields Junction to collieries at Great Wyrley & Essington, and was extended by 1797 via Walsall to Lichfield and the Coventry Canal. Surveyed and engineered by James Brindley, the Birmingham Canal was authorised in 1768 to connect Birmingham to the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal near Wolverhampton and with a branch to Wednesbury, the nearest coal mines to the city. Looking for a perfect place to picnic, relax, think, run, walk your dog and more, all for free? The Ridgacre Branch off the Wednesbury Old Canal dates from 1827. You could join over 400 groups who volunteer with us every year, If you're aged 16-25 and would like to get involved with this exciting project, please get in touch, Find out what's involved with this popular volunteering opportunity, 100% of your donation will be used to make life better by water, Becoming a Friend by making a monthly donation is one of the most effective ways to support our work. In November 2012 the Canal and Rivers Trust, with support from the Birmingham & Black Country Nature Improvement Area, started work on a project to improve linkage between the Dudley and Birmingham canal networks. The BCN is a network of canals that were built to transport materials in and out of Birmingham. Birmingham Canal Old Line Paul Kenton. From reservoirs to club-managed canals and river stretches - find your nearest place to fish, Download your free guide today and start exploring the waterway nature near you. Become a member for as little as £36 per year – or you can choose to give more. The Birmingham Old Main Line Canal runs from Aldersley Junction on the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal in the West to Gas Street Basin in the centre of Birmingham. For more detailed information about the cookies we use, see our '. On 24 January 1767 a number of prominent Birmingham businessmen, including Matthew Boulton and others from the Lunar Society, held a public meeting in the White Swan, High Street, Birmingham to consider the possibility of building a canal from Birmingham to the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal near Wolverhampton, taking in the coalfields of the Black Country. We'd also like to set optional analytics cookies to help us improve it. Showing images tagged with Birmingham Canal Old Line tag. View product description | View delivery options. A unique feature of the New Main Line is the toll islands built midstream at various key points. View all tagged images - In Browser. It crossed higher ground by rising through 6 locks at Smethwick to a 1 mile summit level then descending through 6 locks at Spon Lane. Out of these cookies, the cookies that are categorized as necessary are stored on your browser as they are essential for the working of basic functionalities of the website. On a trip along the Old Main Line, you can spot the New Main Line in the cutting below, as well as the Titford Canal, Engine Arm and Netherton Tunnel Branch. Any cookies that may not be particularly necessary for the website to function and is used specifically to collect user personal data via analytics, ads, other embedded contents are termed as non-necessary cookies. Brindley designed the canal to follow natural contours … It's the undisputed canal capital of the world! Find out more about the region's work to improve wellbeing for the local community, Wellbeing on your doorstep. may indicate Brindley planning ahead to cut through the summit, but the limited finance and engineering techniques of his day meant that would have to wait 60 years for completion. Search within these images: Under the M5 viaduct, seen from the railway by Christopher Hilton for square SP0089. Coal was being carried on James Brindley's canal from Wednesbury into the City of Birmingham in 1769 and by 1772 the line was open through to Aldersley near Wolverhampton, proving profitable almost from the start. 6.6 miles of its 13.4 mile length are currently navigable. Water was supplied from reservoirs at Smethwick, by 1774 from Titford Pool, and soon from various mine pumping engines discharging into the canal. The Old Birmingham Mainline Canal runs from The Mainline at Tipton and around linking to many canals and crossing over two canals via aqueducts and then back to the Mainline Canal at Smethwick or Oldbury. The arm takes its name from the first Boulton & Watt engine to be installed by the Birmingham Canal Company; it pumped water between the levels before being moved first to mine workings at Ocker Hill thence the Birmingham Science Museum. In recent years much of the old industry has been swept away and, whilst we may regret the loss of historic buildings, new development and the greening of the canal corridor as pollution has declined are opening up attractive new surroundings which promise a bright future for the Birmingham Canal. Original (Ex VAT) Added to shopping basket Add to shopping basket Enquire about this product 0% APR INTEREST FREE PAYMENT. https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/.../canal-and-river-network/old-main-line Will you leave a gift in your Will to keep the canals and rivers you care about alive? By 1792 the Dudley Canal had been extended through Dudley Tunnel to join the earlier branch into the limestone mines from Tipton Junction. 07807276. You also have the option to opt-out of these cookies. However, traffic continued to increase and the locks at Smethwick remained a bottleneck so in 1824 engineer Thomas Telford was consulted and recommended extensive improvements to the main line. From Smethwick Junction an impressive cutting was excavated up to 70 feet deep to continue the new canal at the Birmingham level through to Bromford Junction at the foot of the Spon Lane locks. © The Inland Waterways Association 2021 | We are a registered charity no. Another example of the canals upgrade is The Roundhouse, a brick crescent-shaped building on the Birmingham Canal Old Line. From the Malt House, cross over the footbridge towards the National Indoor Arena (NIA) and walk down the ramp to the water’s edge. At Tipton the line makes a junction with the Dudley Canal near the northernmost portal of Dudley Tunnel. Line . The canal is 29.5 miles long with 58 locks. It is located on Gas Street, off Broad Street, and between the Mailbox and Brindleyplace canal-side developments. No need to register, buy now! From the west Telford’s new Birmingham Canal main line has arrived, from the east the Worcester & Birmingham Canal joins the BCN and to the north is the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal. You've nine free days out guides to choose from - where will you go first? 4. At Tividale the Old Main Line crosses the Netherton Tunnel Branch on Tividale Aqueduct. Find your perfect volunteer role today. The Titford Canal, which connects via the 6 Titford Locks (or ‘The Crow’) was opened in 1837, the Bradley Locks Branch with 9 locks connecting the Wednesbury Oak Loop  to the Walsall Canal in 1849, and the Netherton Tunnel Branch in 1858. The locks at Titford, known locally as the Crow Flight after a local benefactor, give access to Titford Reservoir and various branches. You will cruise along quiet stretches of the canal which first brought commercial life to Birmingham and was the start of the first industrial revolution over two hundred years ago. Birmingham’s canal network has seen a rejuvenation in recent times, growing in popularity year by year.Whether you’re looking for a traditional pub for a few ales or a cosy bar for a snack, here are 7 great canalside bars that sit adjacent to the city’s canals. The Galton Valley section was opened by 1829 and the huge amount of material excavated was already being used to build the extensive embankments of the ‘Island Line’ which continues the New Main Line from the Wednesbury Old Canal at Pudding Green Junction in a dead straight line for over 2 miles to Tipton. Download your free regional guide today. Download this stock image: Birmingham Canal, Old Line, Birmingham, England - TT52E4 from Alamy's library of millions of high resolution stock photos, illustrations and vectors. Although built for the standard narrow boat, the lock-free Wolverhampton level of the Birmingham and Wyrley & Essington canals was large enough for a special size of narrow boat known as ‘Ampton’ boats or Wharf boats up to 86ft length by 7ft 9in beam to maximise capacity. Want to make a real difference to your community? Broad Street Basin, Birmingham Main Line Canal, Wolverhampton, date 1956, P/7337 This photograph is one from the large collection held by Wolverhampton Archives and Local Studies. In 1789 the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal joined the Birmingham Canal at the top of Farmers Bridge Locks, although by then the two companies had merged (Originally as the rather long-winded ‘Birmingham and Birmingham and Fazeley Canal Navigations’ but changed in 1794 to the Birmingham Canal Navigations). A free day out for all the family. Today, plans for the building is to create a place for leisure activities. It is mandatory to procure user consent prior to running these cookies on your website. We are the charity that campaigns to protect and restore the country's 6,500 miles of inland waterways. The BCN remained busy well into the railway age when other canals succumbed to the competition, with extensive rail interchange wharfs for local collection and deliveries. Find out all about navigable rivers and canals near you, We need your help to protect and restore the waterways. I took this standing on one bridge, looking at another. Together we can protect and restore our waterways; the UK’s 6,500 miles of canals and rivers need your help. All these improvements were completed by 1838 and shortened the through route by no less than 7 miles, from 22½ miles to 15½ miles. The Engine Arm is a feeder that crosses Telford's later New Main Line on the elegant cast iron Telford Aqueduct. Near Spon Lane Junction this ‘New Main Line’ canal passes under the more conventional two-arched brick-faced Steward Aqueduct which carries the original route which became known as the ‘Old Main Line’. Built to Brindley's contour method, in which the water level followed where possible the contours of the landscape, it was a meandering route of more than 22 miles. The Birmingham Canal main line met the Worcester & Birmingham Canal at Gas Street Basin. While those in a hurry head straight down the main line, if you have time to explore, these waters provide a fascinating diversion. The latest HS2 Phase 2b Western Leg Design Refinement proposals affect the Ashton Canal and Rochdale Canal in Manchester. An early improvement was to add an extra lock to the Wolverhampton flight; for some reason the bottom lock had been built with a bigger fall than the others which obviously wasted water so in 1784 its drop was reduced and an extra lock (now Lock 20) added above it. Seven reasons why fishing is good for you, National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port, National Waterways Museum, Gloucester Docks, Anderton Boat Lift Visitor Centre, Cheshire, Standedge Tunnel and Visitor Centre, Yorkshire, Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Visitor Centre, North Wales, Volunteering roles for people who love boating. Surveyed and engineered by James Brindley, the Birmingham Canal was authorised in 1768 to connect Birmingham to the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal near Wolverhampton and with a branch to Wednesbury. Could you join your local Towpath Taskforce team and help us to keep our canals looking lovely? The traffic is now all for pleasure and inevitably the built-up and industrial nature of the surroundings mean the BCN is less used than many other waterways. ... see what work we're doing here and check your route. It was designed by Thomas Telford to shorten and straighten the course of the Birmingham Canal Old Main Line, taking seven miles off the original length. Necessary cookies are absolutely essential for the website to function properly. Love the waterways? Available. The Worcester and Birmingham Canal runs from the centre of Birmingham through beautiful country side to the the heart of the cathedral City of Worcester. These originally carried a small brick tollhouse and many have central lay-by channels for gauging boats. Originally known as the Birmingham Canal, the BCN Main Line runs from Aldersley Junction, north of Wolverhampton, to Gas Street Basin. Many of these are still open to boats and walkers, although some are no longer navigable. Show more Here, you';; see mainly blue engineering bricks; known locally as ‘toccy bricks', they were made from Staffordshire clay and baked in the hottest part of the oven rendering them virtually impervious to water. Improving a stretch of the Birmingham Mainline Canal foraging habitat for birds, butterflies and bees. The Birmingham Canal Navigations (Old Main Line) is a narrow canal and is part of the Birmingham Canal Navigations. More than 100 miles of canals make up the Birmingham Canal Navigations (BCN) today. The canal intersects with 2 other canals, meeting the Stratford-upon-Avon Canal at Kings Norton Junction and meeting the Droitwich Canal at Hanbury Junction. That both ends were at the same ‘Birmingham level’ of 453 feet o.d. 212342 and a company limited by guarantee no. This category only includes cookies that ensures basic functionalities and security features of the website. Commercial traffic on the Birmingham canal was heavy and varied for nearly 200 years, including coal, coke, limestone, iron, clay, bricks, tiles, timber, tar, gasoil, nightsoil, manure, rubbish, horse provender, foodstuffs, beer and all manner of manufactured goods. But congestion at the locks led to engineer John Smeaton being engaged to lower the summit by cutting through the hill at the Wolverhampton level, eliminating 3 locks at each end. By Smethwick Top Lock Telford built an attractive single-span cast iron aqueduct to carry the Engine Arm canal, and several road bridges which cross the Galton Valley cutting including the magnificent cast iron Galton Bridge. Birmingham and Fazeley Canal: 15 miles (24 km) Enjoy a walk or cycle along the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal from the city centre of Birmingham to the town of Fazeley in Staffordshire. Find a waterside stroll or a satisfying hike along our beautiful canals and rivers, Help us make a difference and have fun along the way. This superseded the original Smethwick Great Reservoir which has since been built over. This arrangement wasted much precious water and in the 1780s the engineer Smeaton, who was also responsible for Eddystone Lighthouse, lowered it to the 473 feet level. Find walks, activities and more within. Designed to shorten and straighten the Birmingham Canal Old Main Line and without a single lock, this is one of the only canals in the UK that you can reach the 4mph speeding limit! Here the 3 Factory Locks raise it to join the Old Main Line again at Tipton Factory Junction. The Gower Branch with the 3 Brades Locks, 2 of which form the only staircase on the BCN, was opened in 1836 to give another connection between the Old and New Main lines. We're one of the UK's biggest charities and we take pride in everything we do, If you're thinking of getting in touch then please take a moment to look through these pages as we probably have the answer on our website, As the weather is warming up we want everyone to be able to enjoy our canals and rivers in the safest possible way, We're continually carrying out work to improve our canals and rivers. The vast number of canals cutting their network of ingenious routes between the towns of Birmingham and the Black Country, with their branch canals and linking arms are a remarkable … But the stretch which runs below Broad Street is to be closed to … There were two original termini in Birmingham by 1772; the canal dividing at Old Turn Junction to access wharfs at Newhall Street, and via Broad Street Tunnel to Gas Street Basin and Paradise Wharf. (Only the later flight remains in use today although the line of the original locks can still be seen, but the 3 remaining Spon Lane locks are the originals from 1769 and thus the oldest on the BCN.). The Old Main Line of the Birmingham Canal loops from Birmingham to Wolverhampton. Your cruise on one of our three passenger narrowboats will depart from the International Convention Centre Quayside, opposite Brindley Place, the bustling heart of Birmingham. BCN Main Line (originally known as the Birmingham Canal) from Aldersley Junction (north of Wolverhampton) to Gas Street Basin (at the Worcester Bar in central Birmingham), using some of the Old Main Line canal. The Old Wharf basins at Paradise Street which included the canal company offices have also been lost to development. Attractions include the bars and restaurants of Brindley Place, the National Sea Life Centre and the Birmingham Repertory Theatre. Join us and together we can continue to campaign to protect and restore the waterways you love. View campaign; Waterways in Progress Grant: Chesterfield Canal. These cookies will be stored in your browser only with your consent. Our work to protect them is more urgent than ever. Our open days offer a different perspective of our waterways, a behind-the-scenes look at the great work we do. Found just off popular party strip, Broad Street, the Pitcher & Piano can be found nestled in amongst the bars of Brindleyplace and … Droitwich Canal at Hanbury Junction detailed information about the cookies we use, see our ' in. Website to function properly Enquire about this product 0 % APR INTEREST free PAYMENT loops Birmingham. On the Birmingham Canal Old Line of inland waterways choice, 100+ million high quality, affordable RF and images... The Line makes a Junction with the charity that campaigns to protect and restore the.. National Sea Life Centre and the Birmingham Main Line is the Roundhouse, a brick crescent-shaped building the... Parallel Flight to reduce traffic delays both ends were at the great work we do uses cookies to your. But a replica has been built at Smethwick Top Lock which has since been built.. Commissioned the Canal engineer James Brindleyto propose a route 's lots of pretty locks, Old,... 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