WEDGWOOD FACTORY AND RETURN FROM GAILEY
You can do this route from :
This leisurely route takes you through some pretty Staffordshire countryside.
If you want to, you can spend a day at the Wedgwood Visitor Centre, as you will have plenty of time.
There are some nice canal side pubs along the route, and attractions such as Shugborough Hall and Park and The Shire Hall in Stafford.
Leaving Gailey Wharf, you will be heading for Filance Lock No. 37, about 2 miles away. If you have more time, you may like to cruise further.
Other than the marina, this stretch of canal is pretty quiet, except when you are alongside the M6 from Bogg's Lock to Otherton Bridge. You will then cruise into the outskirts of Penkridge, where you can moor at Filance Lock No. 37, then perhaps have a meal at the Cross Keys pub. It is canal side and family-friendly.
You will have cruised 2 miles and navigated 5 locks in about 2 hours.
Penkridge is a small village, bisected by the M6. Just beyond here, to your right, is Teddesley Park, where The Hall has since been demolished, although there is an extensive wooded estate.
The M6 veers off to the north west, so peace returns on this pretty stretch of canal.
The next village is Acton Trussell, best seen from the canal as it has been subject to much modern housing.
Beyond here, and through Deptmore Lock, you will approach Radford Bridge No. 98, where you will find the Radford Bank Inn, just a short walk away.
Stafford is to your right, and is about a 30 minute walk from the pub. Alternatively, you can get a bus which runs every eight minutes.
There is a Tourist Information Centre in Stafford, and also The Shire Hall Gallery, where you will find work by local artists, photographers, jewellers, etc. The town itself is well worth visiting, if only for the old buildings and church of St Mary.
Following the canal out of the town, a sharp, almost u-bend, takes you to Baswich and on to Milford, which you can reach from Tixall Bridge.
In Milford is The Barley Mow, so you may like to moor up for lunch. Alternatively, there is a fish and chip shop in the town, called Little Fawn.
A little further along, Tixall is on your left, and the navigation reaches Tixall wide, where the canal now resembles a lake. If you are lucky, you may see one of the kingfishers for which it is well-known. Across the valley the woods conceal Shugborough Hall and Park. If you moor at Tixall Wide, it's only a short walk if you want to visit. For ticket prices, opening times, please see their website.
Soon you will reach the Great Haywood Junction, where you need to bear left onto the Trent and Mersey Canal, and cruise towards Weston Upon Trent, en route to Stone. Hoo Mill Lock is the first one you approach, and is a busy spot with lots of moored boats and a boatyard. It is here that the A31 comes alongside the canal for a short distance.
Once you reach Brinepit Bridge No. 79, you can moor for the night.
You will have cruised 12 miles and navigated 8 locks in around 6¾ hours.
The canal is quiet and peaceful, and Weston Upon Trent is a pretty village with local amenities. There are two pubs here – The Woolpack and the Saracens Head.
Passing through Salt, you will shortly be in the suburbs of Stone, and at the bottom lock there is an ideal spot to moor, and a quaint pub canal side, called the Star.
Stone is a pretty, bustling town, with excellent shopping facilities, and is steeped in canal history, with much to see and do.
Leaving Stone, you will make your way to Barlaston, home of the Wedgwood Visitor Centre. But before mooring here to take a look around, cruise further on until you reach Trentham Lock Footbridge, where you can turn around ready for the return journey. Find suitable moorings if you want to stay for two nights, as this will give you a whole day to visit the museum, before returning.
You have cruised 11 miles and navigated 11 locks in around 6¾ hours.
Today you can spend the day at the Wedgwood Visitor Centre, and stay at the same mooring, ready to make your return journey tomorrow.
From Monday to friday you can do a Factory Tour and see craftsmen at work in the heart of the Potteries, utilising unique artisan skills and techniques honed over 250 years at Barlaston, the home of Wedgwood.
The award winning Factory Tour offers an indepth view of all aspects of quality ceramic production including casting, figure making, pattern decorating and hand painting, ornamentation and gilding. See iconic Jasper pieces in production showcasing the pinnacle of ceramic craftsmanship.
The largest Wedgwood retail space in the world, also factory shop is here.
Make your return journey to Gailey Marina by 9.30am on the last day.
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.
Maps and Guides
Sorry, we have no pub guide for this route currently.