A lost line

Weeks ago, I promised to give you some more of the archive of pictures local historian Clive Roberts had happened upon, and haven’t got round to it – so here’s a remarkable blast of pictures of the lost and largely derelict Wyrley and Essington/Lichfield Canal, which ran from Ogley Junction Brownhills (near Grasmere Gardens) to Lichfield via Pipe Hill and on to Huddlesford, near Whittington, where it joined the Coventry Canal.

The canal had 30 locks in total and was believed to have been abandoned around 1933, but formerly closed in 1957. I’m not certain of that – perhaps waterway buffs could enlighten me with the exact date and reason for closure?

The canal is now referred to as the Lichfield Canal and is being restored as part of the Lichfield and Hatherton project, carried out by dedicated enthusiasts.

I’ll give the source in a subsequent post next week – but I don’t want to spoil a further surprise.

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22 Responses to A lost line

  1. Michael Turner says:

    I remember walking along the canal, from the Anchor bridge and passed these locks when i was just a little child, about 1960, perhaps earlier. We would walk with, mom and dad, and my grandad as far as, i think it was “”The Boat “” pub, just before Muckley Corner, have a drink of pop, well, for me anyway, and then walk back along the road, as far as Shire Oak and then back down to our house, on the Anchor Bridge. Some times, i know we would walk along the farm track, at Lanes Farm, and come out by the Telephone box, and postbox, just up from The Anchor Pub. Thanks for helping me relieve an earlier happy part of my life !!!!!!!!

  2. alvin cox says:

    Bob had the locks at ogley used to be called the *seven sisters* i remember walking down them.
    when i was young possibly in the late 50,s.

  3. leonard stretton says:

    These pictures show what countryside we have on our door step . Big thanks for showing us , both bob and clive roberts .

  4. Brian Clenton says:

    My brother caught a good Tench in the pound by the third lock before it dried up .We lived opposite the foundry in Lindon Rd just down from the Anchor Bridge so it was a lovely walk from there to the locks

  5. Such a pity it was lost. I really hope that they do manage to restore/rebuild the canal. Beautiful photographs

  6. Craig Humphries says:

    Such super photos, which are hard to come by of this stretch. Can anyone confirm my suspicions that the photo with the hump backed bridge with cars on is the Barracks Lane bridge? Let’s hope this line does get reinstated in the not too distant future. Craig

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  8. stymaster says:

    I remember once, when The Boat was still a pub, making the mistake (never again) of believing someone in there who said the line of the canal was still walkable (like parts of the abandoned bits of the W&E are). It wasn’t, and the resutling mud was not pleasant.

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  10. Wonderful photos! Reading this today inspired me to write a blogpost about the canal. I’ve been meaning to write it for ages: https://christinehowles.wordpress.com/2015/02/28/rebuild-it-and-they-will-come-the-lichfield-canal/

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  13. pmanslow says:

    I have a Photo taken around 1952 of my Mother, Margaret Preston, age 16, taken of her sitting on the bridge railing, that looks like the one in the photo “Ogley Locks, Whitsun 1958, File 21”

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