Tuesday, 16 January 2018

Digbeth Branch Canal

The Digbeth Branch Canal was built in 1799. It is a short stretch of waterway that links the Grand Union Canal at Bordesley Junction to the Birmingham and Fazeley Canal at Aston Junction and hence enables boats on the Grand Union to go through into the city centre. The canal was built as part of the Birmingham Canal Act of 1768.

Opened: 1799
Route: Aston-Bordesley, Birmingham
Distance: 2.4km
Status: Complete
Although only 2.4 km/1.5 miles long the canal is certainly not lacking for features. It has two tunnels, the Ashted and Curzon Street tunnels - the latter carries several of the approach railway lines including the West Coast Main Line into Birmingham New Street over the canal. There are also a number of locks and bridges, plus a wharf and a basin! Its not the most scenic of canal walks it has to be said.
Originally the canal only stretched as far as the Warwick Bar where a stop lock was installed to stop water leaking between the Birmingham Canal Navigations and what became the Grand Union. However these days the canal is counted as continuing onto Bordesley (or Digbeth) Junction.
Aston Junction

BCU's new campus now dominates the skyline behind this lock

Inside Ashted Tunnel

Travelling through Aston Science Park