Birmingham and Wolverhampton Canal

Birmingham and Wolverhampton Canal

LaunchesPublic RoutesKnown HazardsParking


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Canal Licensing Information

License Authority

Canal and River Trust

The Birmingham and Wolverhampton Canal, known as the Old Main Line, is a 14 mile long stretch of canal. It links Birmingham with Wolverhampton, with the help of 24 locks.

A historically rich stretch to paddle along, it takes you through the heart of the Black Country. As you paddle along, you’ll enjoy a rich tapestry of industrial revolution history everywhere you look.

It was a profitable canal in its time, and built to James Brindley’s contour method. This meant the canal followed the contours of the landscape where it could.

A range of modifications to the canal followed over the years. This included lowering the Smethwick to Spon Lane section by 18 feet to 473 feet, removing the need for six locks.

Route of the Birmingham and Wolverhampton Canal

As with many of the waterways around this area, the canal joins in various places with more Birmingham navigations. These include the Wyrley and Essington canal, Staffordshire and Worcestershire canal and Titford Canal.

These canals around Birmingham make for superb day paddle. Alternatively, go for a multi-day adventure, with each canal offering something quite different!

Birmingham has more waterways than Venice! That’s what people say. That’s a lot of exploring you could do in a boat.