Monday, 22 January 2018

Soho Loop

The original Birmingham Main Line stretched from over 36km from Aldersley Junction (Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal) to the centre of Birmingham. The canal opened to traffic in 1769 and was fully open in 1772. However the original line was long and winding as it followed the contours of the land with a number of deviations to give access to the many industries in the area. This was creating bottlenecks along the route.

A much straighter New Main Line was built in the 1820s, opening in 1827. Much of the original main line was kept especially where it gave access to industry, some of the old loops becoming branches of the new main line including the Soho Loop.
The Soho Loop is a 2km section of canal which once had a branch which served Matthew Bolton's Soho Manufactory. The remnant of the Soho Branch is now private moorings. A notable location the Soho Loop passes is Winson Green prison and also Soho railway depot.
Rotton Park Junction, the Soho Loop begins under the bridge

Soho Loop

A pipe bridge

Winson Green junction, the Main Line is beyond

The Soho Branch