Crossing the city

I thought it was about time for some more ride videos. I know many readers enjoy these, and a lot of the bicycle-curious wonder about cycling the canals in Birmingham city centre.

Yesterday, it was a lovely afternoon when I finished work, so rather than take an overheated commuter train, I thought I’d cycle home along the canals. The video above is the journey from near Tyseley into the city centre, along the Birmingham & Warwick Canal, finishing at Bordesley Junction.

The footage is speeded up by about 3.5 times, and the journey – past Tyseley Incinerator, the Ackers Trust, through Small Heath, Camp Hill and Bordesley – took just 13 minutes. Note the occasionally rough towpath conditions and bone shaker cobbled bridges – this is one of the worst inner-city stretches of towpath in Brum, but it’s in no way impassible.

The music is the lovely ‘Grace for Sinners and Ramblers’ by Iron & Wine, one of my favourite bands.

For the best video quality, click on the little gear symbol in the bottom right of the video box and click the highest number that will play on your computer. Resolutions up to 1080HD high definition are available.

The second film goes from where the first left off – Bordesley Junction – to Salford Junction and the Tame Valley Canal under Spaghetti Junction. This one is speeded up about 3 times, and is a great run, through Saltley and Aston.

It’s about fifteen minutes, so it shows that crossing the city from Tyseley to Gravelly Hill is possible in less that half an hour. The music for this clip is the quite rare ‘Better Days’ by The McCluskey Brothers, one of Glasgow’s great lost bands.

More stuff like this as ever, on my 365daysofbiking journal.


The canals of Birmingham show surprising things – from motorway junctions to Victorian architecture.

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4 Responses to Crossing the city

  1. stymaster says:

    I’ve walked that section, in the reverse direction. While not “lovely”, it’s certainly interesting, and there’s some great architecture and industrial heritage that way.

  2. morturn says:

    I also rode this section of canal yesterday too, joining at the Akers trust on to Salford Bridge, and then on along the Fazeley canal, Pype Hays park and into Sutton Park (we may have passed each other).

    I then came back via Streetly gate, Kingstanding, Witton Lakes, Brookvale Park and back to Salford Junction. Then home the same way.

    I enjoyed every minute of the canal towpath ride; it made me appreciate how valuable our heritage is, and how much our heritage gives back. Aren’t we fortunate when we think that in the early sixties, the powers that be were happy to let our waterways fall into disuse, and would have been happy to fill them in and build over them. However some far sighted individuals prevented this from happening.

    Thanks for posting the videos bob!

  3. Pedro says:

    Great videos Bob, but is their any way to download and reduce the speed to a walking pa e.

    Regard Peter

  4. Mick P says:

    Really enjoyed those, with a glass of chilled Early Grey and a couple of biscuits. A fine pair of mighty gasometers on the right not long before Spaghetti Junction. Here’s what fun you can have with a gasometer if you cover it with computer-controlled lights. This happened in Rome’s Testaccio district in 2006.

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