2020 BCN Annual Cleanup report

Our weekend of hard labour, on March 14/15 2020, was very successful, we had a good time grappling and sorting junk for scrap metal. The Saturday got off to a good start in reasonable weather. With support from the Canal & River Trust, Coombeswood Canal Trust and Inland Waterways Associations Waterways Recovery Group, the Walsall Canal from Ryders Green to …

Newly discovered links!

Jeffrey Carter sent two links that look very interesting indeed. The first is about pubs in Tipton 200 years ago. Not directly BCN-related, although it seems more than likely that the boatmen of the past might have enjoyed the odd pint here and there. Pubs must have been everywhere at the time! The second one is very much BCN-related – …

BCNS and the Lapal Canal Trust – update

The Birmingham Canal Navigation Society has now become corporate member of the Lapal Canal Trust. This allows LCT to access far greater skills required in the future, and it definitely creates a more professional feel to future funding applications. LTC received a donation of £20,000 from the Unite Group, their “Battery Park” block of students flat is just next to …

Work party 29 February 2020

There was a good turnout for our work party on the 29th February to help CRT volunteers clear overhanging vegetation from the footpaths around the recently dredged Titford Pools. The weather was kind to us, apart from a couple of short, sharp hail showers. We filled Phoenix with more timber, collected some fly tipped rubbish on our way back to the …

Portway Branch

The photo was taken from the first boat navigating the Portway Branch after extensive dredging of the Titford Pools by the Canal & River Trust. Notice the blue brickwork on the left that had been buried for many years. The Portway Branch was abandoned in 1960. Two IWA rallies were held (1978 and 1982) to draw attention to the Titford …

Carter’s Arm

The only historic arm on the Aston Flight, Birmingham & Fazeley Canal, that is still in water for most of its original length. It is the only point on the B&F that allows working boat Atlas to be winded. When was the last time a boat has navigated the branch? Does anyone know which industries it served? Does anyone have …

BCN 250 – A Personal View

By Martin O’Keeffe, Chairman, BCN Society Whilst the opening of the canal from Wednesbury into Birmingham in November 1769 was really only the start of the development of the BCN system. However this led to the formation of a canal network which transformed the area and resulted in Birmingham becoming a great manufacturing centre. The 250th anniversary of this event in 2019 seemed something that …

Bradley Canal Restoration Society

The BCN Society supports the Bradley Canal Restoration Society in their fascinating project to restore a lost canal link. The photo above shows the handing over of a £1,000 cheque for the BCRS. On the left of the cheque is Dave Pearson, BCRS chairman, and on the right Martin O’Keeffe, BCNS Chairman. What makes this restoration project so fascinating? The …

Canal Hunter – new video, the Slough Arm!

Andy Hunter has released the first video of his third series! This whole series is about the 27 lost miles of the Wyrley and Essington Canal. Almost 50% of the lost canals of the BCN seem to be arms of the “Curley Wyrley”, which is just 34 miles long! In this new video, Andy explains the history of the W&E, …

Chillington Wharf – now online!

The first interactive panorama, of Chillington Wharf, is now on the website. It’s a former railway interchange basin in Wolverhampton, close to Horseley Fields Junction.  You will have seen it from the BCN Main Line. The entrance to the wharf is blocked, and the wharf is on private grounds, with no public access. In 2016, photographer Harald Joergens created the …