Thursday 30 April 2020

Dixon's Branch

Dixon's Branch - New Main Line

This short waterway didn't attract many photographers and our record is incomplete. The following are the images captured during its dying days, before the whole area was redeveloped. 

This post covers the Dixon's Branch, plus the basins in its vicinity.

Aerial view of entire Dixon's Branch

The branch was built in the 1820's and had one significant branch known as the Horsley Colliery Arm, which was itself abandoned and then sold off in the 1930's having supplied coal to the nearby Horsley Ironworks who relocated to this site from one closer to Tipton on the Tipton Green Canal. The residual section was closed sometime between the 1950's and 1965, and these are the only images I have come across featuring this reclusive backwater of the BCN.

Dixon's Branch entrance being closed in 1965 - Ian Huselbee

Dixon's Branch entrance in 1974 by Hugh Potter

Standing above the Dixon's Branch from L&NWR railway bridge

Dixons Junction and Station St Bridge (right) with its 1905 basins from the air. The Horsley Iron Works occupied the area are the foot of this photo.

Building the wall of the basin beside the railway in 1905

The key locations pinpointing the two archive photos above. 

A similar view looking east along Dixon's Branch with Station Street Bridge in the middle distance

Lower Church Lane crossing Dixon's Branch

Oblique view of the Dixon's Branch in 1950

Dixon's Branch at Lower Church Lane

Lower Church Lane  Bridge in 1965 - Keith Hodgkins

East from Lower Church Lane Bridge

Also east towards Horsley Road Bridge in distance - Sandwell Archive

Horsley Road Bridge - Laurence Hogg Collection

Looking west back to Lower Church Lane Bridge

West to Lower Church Lane Bridge - Laurence Hogg

Three blurred images of Dixon's Branch being redeveloped from Laurence Hogg video

Winter on Dixon's Branch from Lower Church Lane Bridge to Horsley Road Bridge

Horsley Road Bridge 1974 by Hugh Potter

Eastern end of Dixon's Branch

Horsley Basin 1965 Ian Huselbee

Horsley Bridge 1965 Ian Huselbee

Horsley Road Bridge (note blocked towpath)

Horsley Road Bridge after infilling by Laurence Hogg

Horsley Road Bridge detail in 1974 by Hugh Potter

Dixon's Branch east of Horsley Road Bridge - Laurence Hogg video

Dixons Branch - Laurence Hogg Collection

The end of the Dixon Branch - Historic England

West back to Horsley Road Bridge by Hugh Potter 1974

Horsley Basin Entrance 1965 Ian Huselbee

A reverse image from the Laurence Hogg slide collection

Horsley Ironworks sign Hugh Potter 1974

From the end of the Dixon's Branch - Laurence Hogg video

From the end of the Dixon's Branch to Horsley Road Bridge

Basins in the vicinity of Dixon's Branch

Entrance to Rattlechain Brickworks - John Whitehouse

Rattlechain Basin - John Whitehouse

Basin entrance opposite Dixon's Branch - John Whitehouse

Stanked off Dixon's Branch (left) with basin entrance opposite - Philip Weaver

Basin opposite Dixon's Branch

Tipton from the Main Line

Ice Breaking at Dudley Port

Old Dudley Port Aqueduct being demolished - Vic Smallshire

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).

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