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The Black Country Living Museum is an open-air museum of rebuilt historic buildings .It is close to Dudley Castle in the centre of the Black Country conurbation. The museum occupies 26 acres of former industrial land partly reclaimed from a former railway goods yard, disused lime kilns and former coal pits.

The museum preserves some important buildings from around the Metropolitan Boroughs of Dudley, Sandwell and Walsall and the City of Wolverhampton; mainly in a specially built village. Most buildings were relocated from their original sites to form a base from where demonstrators portray life in the period from the 1850s to the 1950s.

The museum is constantly changing as new exhibits, especially buildings, are being added.

Close by is Dudley Zoo and castle - a 40 acre zoo home to 200 species of animals and within its wall an 11th century castle

Route Info

Route Facts & Figures

Recommended Holiday
Duration : 7 nights.

Total Cruising Days : 8.00
(Partial or full days)

Total Cruising Time : 44.00 hours

Total Distance : 78.00 miles

Number of Locks : 78

Number of Tunnels : 4

Number of Aqueducts : 0

Read the Cruising Notes

Read our cruising notes to help you plan your canal boat holiday

Read our cruising notes.






Cruising Notes

Day 1

As you are on the outskirts of Stone, you may like to stay moored up and visit the town before leaving.
Stone is a busy, pleasant town, with excellent shopping facilities. At the canalside there are dry docks, wharves and old brewery buildings, as well as the old priory church which in 1751 was rebuilt by the parishioners. There are also plenty of pubs and restaurants to choose from if you want a meal before setting off, for example: The Star (canalside); The Three Crowns; The Crown Hotel.

South of Stone the trees surrounding the canal thin out somewhat opening up views of land that is flatter than a lot that came before it giving far reaching views across endless farmland. It is slightly unfortunate that the canal just can’t seem to shake the busy A51 road and the railway line but noise aside the cruise at this point is picturesque. If the road and rail to the east is too much the River Trent makes a fine constant companion on the opposite side.

The open countryside is punctuated by the occasional coppice of trees or sleepy village, most offering a welcoming local pub to drop into including Burston, Sandon, Salt but shopping opportunities are a bit thin on the ground .

You can moor at Sandon by Flute Meadow bridge 84 as it is 2 hours to here and the Dog & Doublet awaits you to the north in the village, (left along the lane).

You pass the villages of Salt to your right and the pretty village of Weston upon Trent further on to your left by the canal. Both have pubs in the village.
Moor for the night by Weston upon Trent. It is 3.5 hours to here

Day 2

Ingestre hall is not open to the public but lies 1/2 mile south of bridge 78.

Soon the canal arrives at the Great Haywood Junction.

Great Haywood is where the Staffordshire and Worcester Canal meets the Trent and Mersey, and you turn right along the Staffs & Worcs Canal.

Shugborough Hall lies just to the south west of the junction best access is by walking to lock 22 and bridge 73 beyond it .

Shugborough Estate
Journey through the historic estate of Shugborough and experience the nation's best 'upstairs downstairs' experience. Set in 900 acres of stunning parkland and riverside gardens with elegant mansion House, working Victorian Servants' Quarters, Georgian farm, dairy & mill and restored walled garden, which are brought to life by costumed living history characters who share their lives and powerful stories from the past with visitors. Explore Lord Lichfield's private rooms and hear the stories of one of the nation's grandest families, with NEW Shugborough Revisited.

It is 3 hours to here.

You now enter the famous Tixhall wide section of canal and Tixhall Gatehouse which is just a stones throw from the canal, as grand as most grand houses which is the only remnant of Tixhall Hall which burnt down long ago, well worth a short walk for a closer inspection. It is recommended that you leave enough time to enjoy Tixhall Wide, moor up, have a picnic or a walk and enjoy this impressive area as it certainly is a highlight of the cruise.

Milford is the gateway to Cannock Chase and as a consequence can be quite busy in high season.

In Baswich there is a footpath which leads into Stafford town centre where you will not be short of stores, pubs and facilities. From bridge 98 it is 1.5 miles into Stafford town centre (to your left) , there is a frequent bus service.

In Stafford there are many shops & pubs- also good to visit is the Ancient High house- Four hundred years of history are waiting to be discovered within the walls of England's largest timber framed town house. Step inside and embark on a journey from Elizabethan days through the turbulent Civil War era to the more refined Edwardian period.
Also visit Stafford castle: First built by William the Conqueror to subdue the rebellious population, the Castle has dominated the Stafford skyline for over 900 years. Uncover the secrets of the site through Norman times, the medieval period, the English Civil War, right up to the present day.

Stafford has a great mix of national and independent retailers along the bustling high street, in modern indoor shopping centres, and in picturesque cobbled streets.
Penkridge. There is a small store at Penkridge Lock for basic supplies but if you chose to go into the centre there is a wide choice of shops and pubs. Above the lock is the best place to moor to visit this relatively old village.

Moor for the night here it is 7 hours to here.

Day 3

Passing Gailey Wharf, (look out for the large round toll keepers watch tower),the canal is very winding, and curves in a wide arc to the left, towards the Hatherton Branch, over an aqueduct, then curves back to the right.

The twists and turns continue more or less until you reach the point where the M54 crosses the canal.

After this the canal is reasonably straight until you reach Autherley Junction, where the Shropshire Union Canal joins the Staffordshire and Worcester Canal. Carry straight on. When the canal parts again, branch left onto the Birmingham Navigation at Aldersley Junction, where you will soon be met by the sight of the Wolverhampton 21 Locks, where you will have climbed 132 feet by the time you reach Wolverhampton Top Lock No. 1. A daunting prospect!

Once through the locks at Broad Street Bridge there are moorings before and after the bridge and moor here for the night as it is 9 hours to here.

You can take a look around Wolverhampton, and perhaps find a nice pub for a much-deserved drink and meal. There are many pubs and restaurants to choose from, offering a wide selection of meals.

Day 4

Get up early as its only 2.5 hours to the Black Country Museum and you want to spend as much time as you can there.

Leaving here, stay on the main line canal, which twists and turns as it wends its way through places such as Ladymoor, and Coseley, where there is a tunnel that is 360 yards long. Once through the tunnel, you are not far from Tipton Junction, where you will bear right onto the Dudley Canal. The Black Country Museum is at the end of this arm.

For information regarding opening times, admission prices, etc, to The Black Country Museum, please visit There is plenty to do for everyone here, from a boat trip through Dudley Tunnel to and old-time school lesson, glass cutting to sweet making, and plenty of other activities.

Day 5 Day 6 day 7

It is just over 22 hours back to the marina, so just over 7 hours a day cruising will get you back on these last 3 full days


NB: This route has been provided as a guide only. Information may become inaccurate or out of date. You should always check with the marina that the route is possible within your time frame, current weather conditions and canal stoppages etc.


The following boats operate on this route (subject to availability)
Maria Canal Boat
Class : Ginger2
(Sleeps a maximum of 2 People).

Angela Canal Boat
Class : Classic3
(Sleeps a maximum of 3 People).

Ginette Canal Boat
Class : Ginger3
(Sleeps a maximum of 3 People).

Patricia Canal Boat
Class : Ginger3a
(Sleeps a maximum of 3 People).

Mino Canal Boat
Class : Mino
(Sleeps a maximum of 3 People).

Agnes Canal Boat
Class : Classic4
(Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Frances Canal Boat
Class : Classic4
(Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Alice Canal Boat
Class : Ginger4
(Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Lucy Canal Boat
Class : Ginger4a
(Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Carey Canal Boat
Class : Ginger4a
(Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Martha Canal Boat
Class : Ginger6
(Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Olivia Canal Boat
Class : Ginger6a
(Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Elinor Canal Boat
Class : Ginger8
(Sleeps a maximum of 8 People).

Lilian Canal Boat
Class : Ginger8
(Sleeps a maximum of 8 People).


Maps and Guides

Pub Guide

Sorry, we have no pub guide for this route currently.


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The information above is provided in good faith to assist you with planning your canal boat holiday. Information accuracy cannot be guaranteed, however, if you do see something that needs updating, please don't hesitate to contact us.