Now and then

Back last Sunday I featured an image supplied by reader Tony Martin of a Wolverhampton canal wharf taken, it’s thought, in the early 1960s. At the time, not being well acquainted with the area, I couldn’t place it. Tony said at the time that the site had been since changed beyond recognition by the Ring Road, but I had no idea just how much.

Tony yesterday sent the following photo taken this week. I think this nails it.

Thanks to Tony, I’d never have worked it out otherwise…


Wolverhampton Ring Road. Spot the canal – it’s beyond the brick wall on the right. Look at the low metal building and older buildings behind. Note the iron bridge just visible. Image kindly supplied by Tony Martin.

NB Comet

Tony’s old photo – he’s quite right, the Ring Road obliterated the coal yard. Note the metal building and what would become the Canal Club on the right, and the ever present Iron Bridge. Remarkable – and yes, I’ve cycled that stretch loads. Image courtesy Tony Martin.

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9 Responses to Now and then

  1. David Evans says:

    Hi Bob
    The double gable building served as an air raid shelter for horses during WW2 the faded remains of the yellow poster are still just visible from the road. Thanks for both of these photos and for this interesting article.
    Kind regards

  2. Sarah says:

    The Broad Street Bridge you can see in the distance has now been rebuilt over the canal at the Black Country Museum.

  3. David Evans says:

    Hi Bob
    please can readers help…what is or was “the Twenty One”? mentioned to me by a friend, in connection with these two photos recently..Was it a wharf, or bridge?

  4. jamesdclarke says:

    Great insight, especially interesting after seeing the rebuilt bridge at the Black Country Living Museum used in Peaky Blinders!

  5. Chris says:

    There were 21 locks on the canal but not sure if lock 21 is the one by the lock keepers cottage

  6. Pedro says:

    Looking on the OS Guide to the waterways, Lock 1 was between the Broad Street and Little Lane bridges. No 21 was just before the bridge at Aldersley Junction.

    Here are two pictures of the bridge and lock, and for a description see below the photos…

    Further back towards Wolverhampton is the amazing skew arch of Oxley Viaduct seen here…

  7. David Evans says:

    HI Bob
    ask any question!! Many thanks to Pedro and Chris. Much appreciated

  8. Sarah says:

    Originally there were 20 locks, but a new lock was added and the locks became known as ‘The Wolverhampton 21’ or simply ‘The 21’. The new lock is No.20 and has a number of differences to the other 20, such as a single bottom gate instead of doubles on the other locks. This lock was recently rebuilt as the wall started to collapse in after the flight was flooded by vandals.

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