Our blog this week comes to you from James Brindleys 1771 Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal in the Staffordshire village of Wombourne.According to Wikipedia,Wombourne is sometimes referred to as the largest village in England,I thought you’d like to know that little snippet of useless information.We left Wolverley last Wednesday and steadily cruised to the end of the Stourbridge Town Arm,getting there on Friday.Stopping overnight at Kinver on Wednesday and Stewpony on Thursday.
The approaches to the Two Locks at Kinver,Kinver Lock first which is just past the visitor moorings and Hyde lock second.
Kinver is a lovely little village in Staffordshire where they used to make nails,as can be seen from some of the Street Furniture that looks like the old flat nails,and is well worth a stopover.Stewpony doesn’t have much going for it,other than being where the Stourbridge Canal begins at the junction just past the Visitor Moorings,and there isn’t a lot for a visitor to see and do.The Stourbridge Canal is a bit like our “home“ canal,the Erewash,in that the water is so clear you can see the bottom and all the weed growing in it.
Stourton Junction just past Stewpony Wharf where the Stourbridge Canal leaves the Staffs & Worcs,the finger post pointing to the places you can get to from here.
Approaching the third of the four Stourton Locks while going under Four Locks Bridge.Chyandour with a moustache of foam in the top lock.
The bridge just before Wordsley Junction where the Town Arm leaves the Main Line,and yes,we did meet a boat coming the other way.We heard his Horn and pulled over in time just after I took this.
The Stourbridge Arm leaves the Stourbridge Canal Main Line at Wordsley Junction and goes for about a mile and a quarter into Stourbridge where it used to be a Railway Interchange.At the end of the Arm is the home of the Stourbridge Navigation Trust and there are good moorings you can moor safely to explore the surrounding area.We wanted to stay for a couple of days to get a train from the local station to get to see our Family who were having a BBQ for the housewarming of our youngest Daughter’s new house and the Birthday of herself and her Sister.We had a great day out but sadly the BBQ was a non starter because of Sundays torrential rain.
Heading down the arm with some of the old Glassworks on the offside that Stourbridge is famous for.Heading back out on Monday and this was where the old canal entrances to the former Ironworks of John Bradley & Co. are now bricked up but the bridges over them remain.
The Bonded Warehouse at the end of the arm,it was built in 1779 and extended in 1849.It is now part of Stourbridge Navigation Trust and is used for leisure activities.The Trust has an office behind and to the left of the moored boats on the left is a Drydock that used to be part of the canal that went through a low tunnel to the Great Western Railway Transhipment Basin.There were Foundries,Rolling Mills and Steelworks to the right of the warehouse.The large amount of weed and Water Lilies along the arm,all of which you can see in the relatively clear water.The bridge on the left is the bricked up entrance to a former Drydock where boats were built and repaired.
We left Stourbridge on Monday morning in the company of Pete and Val off NB.Tadpole 2 who came into the basin on Saturday to surprise us.We hadn’t seen them for exactly a year when we left Pete at Trent Lock on August the 9th last year,after he helped us through the locks on the Erewash when we were heading for the Shackerstone Festival on the Ashby Canal.The four of us have already consumed a good few beers since meeting up again,we went to the Navigation at Greensforge Lock for a few last night and that’s the reason the Blog is a day late again.
Back at Stourton Bottom Lock ready to drop back down off the Stourbridge and onto the Staffs & Worcs.tadpole 2 in Rocky Lock with boats waiting at either end.The Staffs & Worcs has been busy with quite a few hire boats as well as private ones.
Botterham Staircase Locks,I’ve just brought Chyandour into the bottom chamber ready for Lisa and the crew of another boat to empty the top chamber into the bottom one as we climb up 20 feet or so.Tadpole 2 coming into where we are moored for the night near Wombourne.
Well that’s all again for this week folks.Since our last Blog we have done 22 Locks and 19 Miles,that gives us a Grand Total of 932 Locks and 1511 Miles since October 2012.Take care everyone.