- Birmingham Canal Navigations
Birmingham Canal Navigations (BCN) is a network of navigable
canals connecting Birmingham, Wolverhampton, and the eastern part of the Black Country. The BCN is connected to the rest of the English canal system at several junctions.
At its working peak, the BCN contained about 160 miles (257 km) of canals; today just over 100 miles (160 km) are navigable, and the majority of traffic is from tourist and residential
The first canal to be built in the area was the Birmingham Canal, built from 1768 to 1772 under the supervision of
James Brindleyfrom the, then, edge of Birmingham, with termini at Newhall Wharf (since built over) and Paradise Wharf (also known as Old Wharf) near to Gas Street Basinto meet the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canalat Aldersley(north of Wolverhampton).
Birmingham and Fazeley Canal, from Birmingham to Tamworth, followed in 1784 with the Birmingham Canal Company merging with the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal Company immediately, to form what was originally called the "Birmingham and Birmingham and Fazeley Canal Company". This cumbersome name was short-lived, and the combined company became known as the "Birmingham Canal Navigations" from 1794, as the network was expanded.
The BCN is built on three main levels, each with its own reservoirs.
* 453 ft, the Birmingham Level;
* 473 ft, the Wolverhampton Level;
* 408 ft, the Walsall LevelThese levels are linked by locks at various places on the network.
There are also stretches on their own levels.
Titford Canaland its branches were built at 511 ft, linked to the Titford Reservoir(Titford Pool). A feeder supplies water to the Edgbaston Reservoir.
* A short section of the BCN Old Main Line, at
SmethwickSummit, was built at 491 ft. Pumps at either end were built to pump water used by the locks back to the summit - one at Spon Lane locks, and one at Smethwick locks: the Smethwick Engine. When the summit became too busy John Smeatondesigned a scheme where it was lowered by 18 feet to the Wolverhampton level, eliminating six locks and providing a parallel set of locks at Smethwick which improved traffic throughput. It also linked to the general Wolverhampton Level supply of water.
The canals of the BCN
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.
**Old Main Line, originally terminating in Birmingham at two wharfs now built upon: Old Wharf (adjacent to Gas Street Basin) and Newhall Wharf.
**New Main Line, a revised route for the Birmingham Canal, double
towpathed, largely progressing in straight lines using cuttings and tunnels.
Birmingham and Fazeley Canal(from Old Turn Junction(by the National Indoor Arena), eastwards to the Coventry Canalat Fazeley Junction)
Digbeth Branch Canal
Bumble Hole Branch Canal(part of a bypassed loop)
**Dudley Canal Line No 1 (see also
**Dudley Canal Line No 2 (mostly dewatered; see also
Lapal Tunnel; Netherton Reservoir)
**The Two Locks Line (infilled)
Gower Branch Canal- linking the Birmingham and Wolverhampton levels, via three locks, at Tividale.
Netherton Tunnel Branch Canal
Soho Branch Loop Line(an old circuitous route cut off by Telford's improvements, originally with a branch, the Soho Branchto Soho Wharf, serving the Soho Manufactory)
Spon Lane Locks Branch(between Bromford Junctionand Spon Lane Junctionon the Old Main Line - 3 locks, part of the original Wednesbury Canal, not to be confused with "Spon Lane Branch", another name for Tat Bank Branch on the Titford Canal)
Tame Valley Canal(a later canal cutting off some northern meanders)
Walsall Canal(a more modern canal connecting the main line with Walsall and forming a big northern loop with the Wyrely and Essington Canal)
Walsall Branch Canal
Wednesbury Oak Loop(part of the original Old Main Line, now incomplete)
Wednesbury Old Canal- part of the original Wednesbury Canal
Wyrley and Essington Canal(bought by the Birmingham Canal Navigations in 1840)
Cannock Extension Canal
**Daw End Branch Canal
**Lord Hay's Branch (Lords Hayes Branch) (abandoned)
Coventry Canal(at Fazeley Junction)
Grand Union Canal(connects at Salford Junctionand also Bordesley Junction(originally Warwick Bar)
Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal(at Aldersley Junction)
Worcester and Birmingham Canal(connects the BCN Main Line at the Worcester Bar, (alongside Gas Street Basin), southwards, to the River Severn at Worcester)
Chasewater(feeds Wyrley and Essington Canal)
Edgbaston Reservoir, originally called Rotton Park Reservoir, itself fed from Titford Reservoir(feeds Birmingham Old and New Line)
The BCN Society is a
registered charity(number 1091760) formed in 1968, which exists to conserve, improve and encourage a wide range of interests in the BCN. It publishes a quarterly journal. "Boundary Post". From 1983, it erected signposts at most of the canal junctions on the BCN.
*cite book |last= Broadbridge|first= S. R.|title= The Birmingham Canal Navigations, Vol. 1 1768 - 1846|origdate= 1974|publisher=
David & Charles|isbn= 0-7509-2077-7 (There was no second volume)
*cite book |last= Foster|first= Richard|title= Birmingham New Street. The Story of a Great Station Including Curzon Street. 1 Background and Beginnings. The Years up to 1860|origdate= 1990|publisher=
Wild Swan Publications|isbn= 0-906867-78-9
*cite book |last= Hadfield|first= Charles |title= The Canals of the West Midlands|origdate= |edition= Second|year= 1969|publisher= David & Charles|isbn= 0-7153-4660-1
*cite book |last= Pearson|first= Michael|authorlink= |coauthors= |editor= |others= |title=Canal Companion - Birmingham Canal Navigations|origdate= 1989|publisher= J. M. Pearson & Associates|isbn= 0-907864-49-X - canal maps and text
*cite book|author=Perrott,David|coauthors=Mosse,Jonathan|title=Nicholson Waterways Guide 3 - Birmingham & the Heart of England|publisher=Collins|year=2006|isbn= 978-0-00-721111-1
*cite book |last= Shill|first= Ray |title= Birmingham's Canals|origdate= 2000|publisher=
*cite book |last= |first= |authorlink= |coauthors= |editor= |others= |title= Birmingham Canal Navigations|origdate= 2004|publisher= GEOprojects|isbn= 0-86351-172-4 - Highly detailed printed 1:30,000 sheet map
Transport in Birmingham
* [http://www.bcn-society.co.uk/ BCN Society]
* [http://www.jim-shead.com/waterways/Birmingham-Canal-Navigations.html Jim Shead's website]
* [http://www.tonycanalpics.co.uk/bcn1.html 1973 photographs]
Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.
Look at other dictionaries:
Birmingham Canal Navigations Society — The Birmingham Canal Navigations Society is a waterway society, a registered charity no. 1091760 (since 1968) and a limited company no. 4306537 (since 2002), operating on the Birmingham Canal Navigations, and based at Oldbury, West Midlands,… … Wikipedia
Water levels of the Birmingham Canal Navigations — The Birmingham Canal Navigations (BCN), a network of narrow canals in the industrial midlands of England, is built on various water levels. The three longest are the Wolverhampton, Birmingham, and Walsall levels. Locks allow boats to move from a… … Wikipedia
Worcester and Birmingham Canal — The Worcester and Birmingham Canal is a canal linking Birmingham and Worcester in England. It starts in Worcester, as an offshoot of the River Severn (just after the river lock) and ends in Gas Street Basin in Birmingham. It is convert|29|mi|km… … Wikipedia
Birmingham and Fazeley Canal — The Birmingham and Fazeley Canal is a canal of the Birmingham Canal Navigations in the West Midlands of England. Its purpose was to provide a link between Birmingham and the south east of England, by way of the Coventry Canal and the Oxford Canal … Wikipedia
Birmingham — This article is about the city in England. For the U.S. city named after it, see Birmingham, Alabama. For other uses, see Birmingham (disambiguation). City of Birmingham City and Metropolitan borough … Wikipedia
Canal ring — A canal ring is the name given to a series of canals that make a complete loop.Origin of the TermWhilst there have been canals which formed a ring for centuries, the ring terminology was unknown before the 1960s, when it was coined by the Inland… … Wikipedia
Birmingham-und-Fazeley-Kanal — Vorlage:Infobox Fluss/GKZ fehlt Birmingham und Fazeley Kanal Lage Mittelengland, Midlands Länge ca. 24 km Schleusen 38 Herausragende Bauwerke Curdworth Tunnel Der Birmingham und Fazeley Kanal ist ein Narrowboat Kanal i … Deutsch Wikipedia
Canal — Canals are artificial channels for water. There are two types of canals: water conveyance canals, which are used for the conveyance and delivery of water, and waterways, which are navigable transportation canals used for passage of goods and… … Wikipedia
Transport in Birmingham — Birmingham is a major transport hub, due in part to its location in central England. Public transport in the city is overseen by the West Midlands Passenger Transport Executive whose public brand is Centro/Network West Midlands.RailwaysHistoryThe … Wikipedia
History of the British canal system — The British canal system of water transport played a vital role in the United Kingdom s Industrial Revolution at a time when roads were only just emerging from the medieval mud and long trains of pack horses were the only means of mass transit by … Wikipedia