Sunday, 21 June 2009

River Tame Aqueduct

River Tame Aqueduct
Tame Valley Canal

Another obscurity from the backwaters of the BCN. This late addition to the canal network served as a bypass to the overcrowded Farmers Bridge Locks and BCN Mainline.
The Aqueduct can only be reached on foot and its dramatic high arch is somewhat dwarfed by the looming presence of the 6 elevated section which runs alongside this stretch.

River Tame Aqueduct - north profile

The River Tame drains a relatively small catchment basin between Smethwick, Wolverhampton and Walsall. Whilst it is usually no more than a stream, it regularly floods. I has rained hard the night before my visit and it was clear that the surface run off had overtopped the banks and ponded up behind the aqueduct, about 2 metres above the river level you see in the photos.

River Tame Aqueduct - south profile

It is also on of the best bits of moving water in the Birmingham area for canoeing, with some good weirs in the Sandwell Valley and Perry Barr areas.

The Tame Valley Canal has been inundated with overnight rainwater and the normally dry spillway was a foaming torrent beside the 68 steps up to the towpath above.

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