Exploring the Pensnett Canal is a frustrating business. If it isnt private land it the active railway which bars progress on foot.
Undeterred, I drove round to the satisfyingly named Canal Street, haunt of multiple car breakers and not a place to linger during the working week. But at 9.00am on a Sunday morning the place is deserted and those gaps in the fence are a tempting prospect.
Pensnett Canal at Canal St crossing
I then skirted round to to Stourbridge Road and the crossing at the canals terminus, site of a large interchange basin were canal traffic was transferred to Lord Hays mineral line.
Loading basins south of Stourbridge Road
To round off this visit I walked down Fens Pool Avenue and through a walkway into the Fens Pool nature reserve, following the old line of the Mineral Tramway. The three huge pools were all originally clay pits which were later pressed into service as reservoirs to supply the Fens Branch Canal. The lofty tramway soars above the surrounding lakes and offers an excellent vantage point.
Fens Pool, Pensnett
Middle Pool, Pensnett
Tramway relic - a carriage wheel embedded in iron slag