Bradley Arm Canal
The canal leads from the ‘New Main Line’ to the British Waterways workshops. Once part of Brindley’s ‘Old Main Line’ and latterly the ‘Wednesbury Oak Loop’. © Copyright John M and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
Visitors will be able to take a ‘behind the scenes’ tour of the lock gate workshops on the Bradley Arm of the Birmingham Canal Old Main Line, for the second time, following a popular first year. So, if you missed out here’s your chance to check out the impressive woodworking workshop where thousands of lock gates have been put together over the years.
Bradley Workshop, near Tipton, is one of the hubs of the nation’s waterways, the place where lock gates are carefully refurbished and new ones crafted. Inside its doors, more than 90 lock gates are built every year, which are then taken and used across the nation’s network of canals.
Janet Carter, workshop manager commented: “Last year’s event went really well and we felt we should open up the workshop again in order to give more people the chance to come and take a peek into the workshops. It’s satisfying to give people a chance to see the scale of the work we do to ensure that the waterways are preserved for today’s users and future generations, as well as gain an appreciation for the magnificent industrial heritage in their local area.”
In addition to exploring the workshop, visitors will be able to look round the heritage working boat Scorpio. Volunteers will be on hand to take visitors on a tour of the boat and talk about its history. The education team will also be there with lots of fun activities and information for the whole family.
Time: 9am-3pm. The workshops will be open to the public for self-guided tours.
Location: Bradley Workshop, WV14 8DW.
Booking: Not required.
Volunteer day: National Nest Box Week
19 February 2012
Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal
Volunteers wanted to help install bird and mammal boxes along the Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal, as part of National Nest Box Week.
Hazelstrine Bridge on the Staffs & Worcs Canal at Wildwood, Stafford
An old working narrow boat from London moors up in the picturesque setting by Hazelstrine Bridge, which carries Hazelstrine Lane over the Staffs & Worcs Canal at Wildwood, Stafford. © Copyright Mari Buckley and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
The Staffs & Worcs Canal, as it is commonly known, was built as one of the trunk routes of the canal age – but is now justifiably popular with pleasure boats. Leaving the Trent & Mersey Canal at Great Haywood, and rising over the Compton Summit before dropping to meet the River Severn at Stourport, it runs for 46 miles through almost entirely rural surroundings.
Cutting through mostly soft undulating landscape fashioned by geological events of over 400 million years ago, the Staffs & Worcs is an essential link between major waterways as well as being an enjoyable cruise in its own right. Once full of coal boats, it now forms part of two separate cruising rings. The canal skirts the Birmingham and Black Country conurbation without ever becoming truly urban, making a delightful route through scarce West Midlands countryside.
The entrance to the Marina from the Grand Union Canal (Leicester Line). © Copyright Ian Rob and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.
9th Feb 2012
Tickets have gone on sale for this year’s Crick Boat Show and Waterways Festival, one of the biggest events in the waterways calendar. This year, the festival will be on 2-5 June, meaning it will fall across the Queen’s Diamond Jubilee weekend.
The festival is a great family day out, with attractions including boat trips, live music, children’s entertainment, food and drink stalls, competitions, food demonstrations, evening ghost tours and seminars. More than 200 waterway businesses will be exhibiting, including boat builders, waterway accessories and services, arts and crafts, holiday companies and gourmet food specialists.
Boats and entertainment
The event is expected to attract more than 25,000 visitors, arriving by boat and over land. Moorings and campsites are available for those wanting to make the most of the festival by staying for more than one day.
Crick Boat Show is held at Crick Marina, on the Grand Union Canal Leicester Line in Northamptonshire. It is organised by Waterways World, in partnership with British Waterways and Crick Marina.
Businesses interested in exhibiting should contact Ian Sharpe on 01283 742977 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Anchor Lane View
The junction of the Bradley Canal Arm with the Birmingham Canal viewed from the Anchor Lane bridge, the Black Country Route bridge in the background. © Copyright Gordon Griffiths and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence