The Brandwood Tunnel.




27th June 2005. This is the southern portal of the Brandwood Tunnel on the Birmingham to Stratford upon Avon Canal. I went past it on a bicycle ride on a sweltering day! Monumental in design, the scale may be deceptive; the width of the canal at the entrance is only about 20 feet. Still, it must be remembered that the canal was built between about 1795 and 1815. The tunnel is 352 yards (321m) long. This canal branches off the Birmingham to Worcester canal at Kings Norton. Both canals pass, by tunnels, through the high ground to the south of Birmingham, part of the Severn-Trent watershed. The corresponding tunnel on the Worcester canal is ~1.5 miles long (2,726 yards (2,492m) to be precise.) Neither tunnel has a towpath: the horses (pairs of donkeys were used too) were walked over the top, while the bargees poled or legged the boat through the tunnel. Later, steam tugs were used to tow trains of boats through.



Revised 12th September 2017.