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Fens Branch

Accessible to all craft kept on the connected inland waterways

Silver Propeller Challenge

Location

Brierley Hill

Visit Fens Branch on the Stourbridge Canal by boat or canoe.

The existing navigable length of the Fens Branch has been chosen as a Silver Propeller Location because it is under used. A photo of your boat either on the moorings or at Brockmoor junction would be good evidence of your visit.

Due reports of a boom across the canal below Britannia Bridge, a photo of your boat just before Britannia Bridge will suffice as proof as well. Please keep in mind that you will have to reverse back to Leys Junction.

Complete our challenge by visiting 20 locations from our list, you will receive our exclusive plaque and goody bag.

History of the Stourbridge Canal

The Stourbridge Canal connects Stourton Junction on the Staffordshire and Worcestershire Canal with the Dudley Canal at the foot of Delph Locks. The main line runs for 5.8 miles (9.3km) with 20 locks with a short branch to Stourbridge from Wordsley Junction below the locks and the Fens branch above the top lock.

Previously, the Stourbridge and Dudley canals were originally proposed as a single canal in 1775, with the primary purpose of carrying coal from Dudley to the Stourbridge glass works. This bill was withdrawn from Parliament following as a result of a fierce opposition from the Birmingham Canals. Two bills were subsequently presented, one for each of the canals, with the details largely unchanged. Both became Acts of Parliament on 2 April 1776, despite continued opposition from Birmingham. After that, the Stourbridge Canal remained independent and profitable right up to nationalisation in 1948.

Fens Branch

The Fens Branch was built as a navigable feeder to the reservoirs in Pensnett known as the Fens Pools. It leaves the Stourbridge Canal at Leys Junction at the top of the locks. Meanwhile, local collieries and iron works grew and as a result, the Stourbridge Extension Canal was built to serve them to join the branch at Brockmoor Junction. This is now effectively the head of navigation on the Fens Branch and there are visitor moorings in the remains of the Stourbridge Extension. Walking further along the Branch leads to the Wide Waters section and the three pools, which is now a local nature reserve.

Photo: Junction Bridge at Brockmoor on the Stourbridge Canal by Phil Wild.

Stourbridge Canal Notes

Stourbridge Canal Dimensions

The maximum size of boat that can navigate the Stourbridge Canal is:

  • Length: 71′ 6″ (21.8 m)
  • Beam: 7′ (2.1 m)
  • Height: 6′ (1.8 m)
  • Draught: 3′ 6″ (1.05 m)

Canoeing & Boat Hire

Go by canoe on the Stourbridge Canal with a CRT licence or British Canoeing membership.

Challenge Location

Fens Branch

Stourbridge Canal

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