Looking uphill at Smethwick Locks from the Middle Lock towards the Top Lock.
The photo is taken on the Main Line of the Birmingham Canal Navigations with Wolverhampton behind the camera.
Straight ahead is the New Main Line towards Birmingham and diverging to the right is the Old Main Line to Birmingham.
Parts of the loop run between high sided industrial buildings which restrict the views, rather like being in a cutting.
Select one of these starting points then keep clicking on the “Next” link to progress along the Ashby Canal.
You can make a virtual cruise (VC) along the canal from the comfort of your armchair. Just select your starting point below, then click the next buttons to move along the canal.
Select one of these starting points then keep clicking on the “Next” link to progress along the Digbeth Branch of the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal.
Choose your starting point (from the links below), then keep clicking the next button for your virtual cruise (VC) along the Forth & Clyde Canal and the Glasgow Branch.
Choose your starting point (from the links below), then keep clicking the next button for your virtual cruise (VC) along the Union Canal.
Leaving the Coventry Canal and entering the Ashby Canal at Marston Junction.
Trinity Marina at Hinckley on the Ashby Canal.
Ashby Trip Boats at Sutton Wharf on the Ashby Canal
Sutton Wharf on the Ashby Canal.
Trip Boats waiting at Sutton Wharf.
Market Bosworth Station on the preserved Battlefield Line.
Attractive cottages at Market Bosworth.
Twenty three babies with just one parent present.
Just one adult visible with twenty three babies.
Mileposts along the Ashby Canal are marked with the distance from Marston Junction (with the Coventry Canal) and the end of the navigation.
The limit of navigation on the Ashby Canal in 2007.
Ashby Canal Limit of Navigation in 2007.
Limit of Navigation on the Ashby Canal in 2010.
Start of the restored section of the Ashby Canal at Donisthorpe, looking towards Moira.
The signpost clearly points the way along the restored section to the end of the canal.
Mileposts along the Ashby Canal show the distances to Marston Junction (28 miles) and to Moria (2 miles) at the end of the canal.
The far end of the Ashby Canal has already been restored from near Donisthorpe to Moira.
Bridge 73-2 on the restored section of the Ashby Canal, just waiting for boats to cruise along.
Looking along the restored section of the Ashby Canal towards Furnace Bridge near Moira.
Swing Bridge at Moira on the Ashby Canal.
The restored furnace building at Moria on the Ashby Canal.
Moira Canal Festival 2010.
Dragon’s head on top of a pole in the car park at Moira Furnace on the restored section of the Ashby Canal.
Boats moored outside Moira Furnace.
Crowds at the Moira Canal Festival 2010.
Ashby Canal Trust stand at the Moira Canal Festival 2010.
The new Moira Lock on the restored section of the Ashby Canal.
New Moira Lock on the restored section of the Ashby Canal. On the right of the picture the water which appears to be flowing over the weir into the canal is being back pumped from below the lock.
Immediately above the new lock on the Ashby Canal at Moira. The weir on the left takes surplus water from above the lock through the bywash to the pound below the lock.
Ground paddle set into the recess above the top gates at Moira Lock so it is not fouled by the walkway when the gate is opened.
The Ashby Canal is considered a “narrow” canal today, that is one for narrow boats only. Indeed, the narrows at Marston Junction at the start will only allow narrowboats onto the canal.
The lower and intermediate gates have gate paddles at Moira Lock on the Ashby Canal.
Imposing large double gates at the bottom end of Moria Lock on the Ashby Canal.
Marquis Bridge 73B on the restored section of the Ashby Canal.
Looking into Bath Yard Basin at the end of the restored section of the Ashby Canal near Moira.
Standing beyond the end of the restored section of the Ashby Canal, looking back into Bath Yard Basin.
Looking along the Rochdale Canal at Ducie Street Junction, with the Pennines behind the camera and the Rochdale Nine Locks leading to Castlefield Junction heading to the upper right of the photo.
The Ashton Canal, at the lower left of the photo, meets the Rochdale Canal, running across the width of photo, at Ducie Street Junction.
Looking backwards along our boat when we after emerging from under the building after leaving Ducie Street Junction and heading up the Ashton Canal.
The Ashton Canal climbs through 18 locks between Ducie Street Junction and Fairfield Junction on its way out of Manchester. This is Lock 7, the top of four locks in the Beswick Flight.
Looking along the Ashton Canal towards Manchester to Clayton Junction where the abandoned Stockport Canal once passed under the towpath bridge on its way to Stockport.
Looking up the Clayton Flight of locks on the Ashton Canal leaving Manchester.
Yew Tree Swing Bridge 14 which was normally closed in 2010 when the photo was taken and had to be opened by boaters to let their boat through. By 2018 this had changed so the swing bridge was normally open.
Fairfield Top Lock 18, the last of the eighteen locks on the Ashton Canal as it climbs out of Manchester. Fairfield Junction with the abandoned Hollinwood Canal is immediately above the locks.
Fairfield Junction sits immediately above Fairfield Top Lock 16. The Hollinwood Canal once ran straight ahead where the short remaining arm is now used for a marina.
Looking along the Ashton Canal at Dukinfield Junction, with Manchester behind the camera. The Peak Forest Canal leaves under the bridge to the right on its way to Marple, Whaley Bridge and Bugsworth Basin.
Looking along the last few metres of the Huddersfield Narrow Canal where it meets the Ashton Canal end on.
Our Waterway Routes narrowboat is turning onto the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal which is generally considered to start at
Our Waterway Routes narrowboat is turning onto the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal which is generally considered to start at Deep Cutting Junction these days.
Farmers Bridge Junction is immediately above Farmers Bridge Lock 1. The section of canal from Deep Cutting Junction (behind the camera) to the basin on the right was originally constructed as …
Farmers Bridge Junction is immediately above Farmers Bridge Lock 1.
The section of canal from Deep Cutting Junction (behind the camera) to the basin on the right was originally constructed as the Newhall Branch of the Birmingham Canal Navigations (BCN).
Aston Junction sits immediately above Aston Lock 1.
The Birmingham & Fazeley Canal descends through the 13 Farmers Bridge Locks and appears on the lower right
A wonderful opportunity to avoid another bank wall alongside the canal has been seized by the builders of this mural.
Salford Junction is one of the few junction where you can cruise in four different directions.
Salford Junction is one of the few junctions where you can go four ways.
The Birmingham and Fazeley Canal runs from Fazeley Junction (behind the camera).
Leaving the Coventry Canal at Fazeley Junction where it meets the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal which turns the corner from the bottom right of the photo to the left.
The Birmingham & Fazeley Canal (from Birmingham) enters at the lower right of the photo and continues of the left of the photo to Whittington where it meets the disconnected section of the Coventry Canal end on.
Peel Wharf includes permanent moorings. The crane outside is …
A long length of almost straight moorings runs towards the north-west from Fazeley Junction.
Most of the bridges between Fazeley Junction and Whittington are similar in style. As this section of canal was constructed by
Most of the route between Fazeley Junction and Whittington is through …
Parts of the route between Fazeley Junction and Whittington are in shade which is …
In most cases the steerers of day boats are very competent but occasionally, when …
Whittington Bridge is of modern design, having been built much more recently than …
The end on junction of the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal and the Coventry Canal at Whittington is marked with …
The end on junction of the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal and the Coventry Canal at Whittington is marked with a boundary stone.
The Digbeth Branch of the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal runs from Aston Junction to Typhoo Basin.
The Digbeth Branch of the Birmingham & Fazeley Canal ends at Typhoo Basin. Two short arms remain from the three longer arms which once served the basin.
Ogley Junction is, today, considered the end of the Wyrley & Essington Canal which runs from Wolverhampton.
The Anglesey Branch runs from Ogley Junction to Anglesey Basin.
The northernmost point of the Birmingham Canal Navigations is Anglesey Basin at the end of the Anglesey Branch which starts at Ogley Junction.
The New Main Line of the Birmingham Canal Navigations runs straight past Deepfields Junction between Birmingham and Wolverhampton.
The BCN Wednesbury Oak Loop is the remaining part of the BCN Old Main Line which was severed at Bradley Workshops many years ago. The photo is taken from the BCN Main Line, with Wolverhampton to the left and Birmingham to the right.
Immediately after Deepfields Junction the canal passes under the main Birmingham to Wolverhampton railway line, a little to the north of Coseley station.
Deepfields Bridge is a modern replacement for the original bridge.
The route appears to skirt around the housing estate, but the canal was simply following the contours through open countryside when it was built and it’s the modern housing estate that has been built up to the line of the canal.
The towpath is easily walk-able along the full length of the Wednesbury Oak Canal and it links with the footpath along the line of the proposed Bradley Canal to form a through route.
The narrows are from a former bridge which, presumably, once carried the pipe across the canal and that’s now been made into a free standing structure.
There were many short arms along the canal, providing connections and moorings for local industries and a few, like this one, are still identifiable, although most have been filled in with nothing left to see.
There’s still a lovely green corridor for the canal to pass through with most of the modern housing set back a little from the canal.
The moorhen sitting on the nest stood up as we approached and revealed three eggs and two very young chicks, possibly watching their first boat going past.
The man looking over the fence on the left was one of several locals who stood and watched the moorhen sitting on the nest in the middle of the canal as we cruised slowly past.
The swan kept a very close eye on us as we cruised past – perhaps it had a nest nearby.