Heart of England
This canal runs from Kings Norton Junction in Birmingham, to Stratford-upon-Avon in Warwickshire.
Starting in the suburbs of Birmingham at Kings Norton Junction, the canal runs through Shakespeare Country, entering the River Avon in the heart of Stratford.
Although it is only 25 miles (40 km) long, it runs through some of the prettiest country in Britain and provides excellent walks along its towpath.
After leaving Kings Norton Junction the canal passes throught the commercial heart of the city and then through the 324 metres Brandwood Tunnel - quite an interesting experience in a canal boat!
Approximately nine miles further on is Lapworth village. It was the home of Robert Catesby, leader of the November 5th 1605 Gunpowder Plot. His tomb is in Lapworth Church. Also close by is the lovely moated Baddesley Clinton Manor.
A picturesque feature of the Stratford Canal is the barrel roofed canal-side cottages.
Forest of Arden
The canal passes through the Forest of Arden with its ancient majestic oak trees, and the charming villages of Preston Bagot, Wootton Wawen and Wilmcote. Preston Bagot has a good flight of locks and a variety of gastro pubs.
Between Wootton Wawen and Wilmcote is Enland’s longest cast iron aqueduct. The towpath is level with the base of the trough and boats pass by above the walker’s head. Wilmcote of course is the site of Mary Arden's Farm (Shakespeare’s mother’s home).
Canal ends at River Avon in Stratford
The canal ends at Stratford Canal Basin (see Bancroft Gardens & Canal Basin article in this website) where it passes through a narrow lock and under a low bridge into the River Avon. The river runs through busy Bancroft Gardens beside the Royal Shakespeare Theatre.
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Further Interesting Information
Google Map - Stratford-upon-Avon Canal