The Bradley Locks Branch lies at the very heart of the industrial Revolution in the Black Country. It was here that John "Iron Mad" Wilkinson set up his ironworks and, if you look at the old maps, every few hundred feet contained a coal mine.
This area was so busy because the 30ft seam of coal came close to the surface at this point, exposing the three seams "Brooch, Thick and Heathen" to easy exploitation.
Brindley's original 1879 canal from Birmingham to Wolverhampton wound through the pace and over time it was criss crossed by a myriad of canal, including the Bradley Locks Branch which was built in stages and in the end connected Brindley's canal to the Broadwaters Branch (now part of the Walsall Canal) the bottom of the hill.
This page offers links to individual pages detailing images the old lost canals in the above area.
1. Bradley Locks Branch - Upper end
2. Bradley Locks Branch - Lower end
3. Gospel Oak Branch (including the Dumaresq and Monway branches)
4. Ocker Hill Branch
5. Wednesbury Oak Loop and Rotton Brunt shortening
6. Lower Bradley Loop
7. Old Mainline, Bloomfield to Bradley
8. Willenhall and Bilston Branches
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The above photos have been assembled from various sources, including those freely found on the internet. My thanks go to the many photographers alive and dead who have contributed to this collection and in so doing, are keeping the memory of these lost canals alive. These images are reproduced for ease of research are are not necessarily the property of this blog, and as such should not be used for commercial gain without the explicit permission of the owner (whoever that may be).