cloud cloud cloud cloud
balloon plane helicopter
Home > Walks > Region > West Midlands > Stourbridge Canal Return to Walks

The crystal canal

tooltipDiscovering Britain walk

Discover glass and iron making along the Stourbridge Canal

box
greater london greater london

During the Industrial Revolution the ‘Black Country’ was a manufacturing landscape where rows of factories and foundries lined a network of canals.

Barges carried coal, sand and limestone to works that manufactured everything from heavy bridges to delicate jewellery.

Stourbridge became world-famous for making iron and glass. This walk follows the Town Arm of the Stourbridge Canal, which was the spine of local iron and glassmaking sites. 

Discover why the Stourbridge Canal was created and enjoy the architecture of its bridges and locks. See the iron foundry that made the first steam locomotive that ran in the USA. Find out why Stourbridge was ideal for glassmaking and about the people who lived and worked here in Victorian times. Visit Britain’s most complete working ‘glass cone’.

separator

The walk was inspired by Graham Fisher MBE and his book Jewels on the Cut which tells the story of the industries that emerged here. 

separator
box
box

Walk Info

Distance:

1 ¾ miles

Level:
An easy walk along the canal towpath

tooltipAn easy walk along the canal towpath

Suitable for:
Keep children away from the canal edge especially at locks

tooltipKeep children away from the canal edge especially at locks

Radar Key Scheme gates along the towpath, a couple of steep bridges to cross

tooltipRadar Key Scheme gates along the towpath, a couple of steep bridges to cross

Dogs should be kept under control beside the canal

tooltipDogs should be kept under control beside the canal

separator
Region:
West Midlands
Setting:
Towns & Cities
Landscape:
Exploiting the landscape Built landscapes Working landscapes
separator
Start:
Canal Street, Stourbridge
Finish:
Red House Glass Cone, Wordsley
Getting there:

tooltipNearest station is Stourbridge Town, shuttle service to Stourbridge Junction

tooltipAccess via A491 (close to J4 of the M5) and A449 from Wolverhampton

tooltipMany local and regional routes, bus station next to Stourbridge Town railway station

tooltipOn National Cycle Route number 54 (Stourport to Derby)

box
Stourbridge Canal

Crystal Mile sculpture
Mike Jackson © RGS-IBG Discovering Britain

Stourbridge Canal

Stourbridge Canal
Mike Jackson © RGS-IBG Discovering Britain

block top

Route map

Select pins on the map to find out more about each point of interest on the walk

Walk kit

Choose between an audio or written guide: download and enjoy!

Downloads

Written guide
A flat route mostly on urban streets

tooltipHelp with downloading - Double-click the icon to download this PDF file. You can save it to your computer or open it now. The file is designed as a booklet. To print it choose ‘Booklet Printing’ from your printer options.

Audio guide
A flat route mostly on urban streets

tooltipHelp with downloading - Double-click the icon to download this ZIP file of the audio commentary (mp3 files) and accompanying booklet (PDF) which contains maps and directions. You can save the audio files to your computer then add them to your mp3 device. This will vary for each device but you can use any supplied software (such as iTunes, Windows Media Player) or drag and drop the files. The PDF is designed as a booklet. To print it choose ‘Booklet Printing’ from your printer options.

Extras
A flat route mostly on urban streets

tooltipHelp with downloading - Double click to download this GPX file and load it on to your GPS device.

Photo Gallery

Find out what you might see on the walk - click on an image to view full size

Loading images...

Comments

Find out what other people said about this walk

We have not yet received any reviews of this walk.

Send your review

Links

Find out more about the walk story and places of interest along the route

External links open in a new window


Jewels on the Cut by Graham Fisher MBE

An exploration of the Stourbridge Canal and the local glass industry

Sparrow Publishing, 2010, Paperback ISBN 978-0954878122

Glass and Glassmaking by Roger Dodsworth

An introduction to the subject of glassmaking and its history

Shire Publications Ltd, 1982. Paperback ISBN 978-0-825263-585-8

Broadfield House Glass Museum

One of the world's best glass collections, including many Stourbridge pieces

http://www.glassmuseum.org.uk

Gorgeous Glass

Find out more about some of the Stourbridge glass companies

http://gorgeousglass.org.uk/

History of Wollaston Group

Archive and information site about Wollaston, including Stourbridge Ironworks and Kinver Light Railway

http://www.historyofwollaston.info/

Ruskin Glass Centre

Home to a wide array of glass crafts

http://ruskinglasscentre.co.uk/

Stourbridge Urban Historic Landscape Characterisation

Dudley Metropolitan Borough Council

http://www.dudley.gov.uk/resident/planning/historic-environment/historic-landscape-characterisation-hlc/stourbridge-hlc/

Tudor Crystal

Glass making company based at the Dial Glass Works

http://www.tudorcrystal.com/

The 2012 Portland Vase Project: Recreation of a Masterpiece by Graham Fisher MBE

How Stourbridge glassmakers recreated a 2,000-year-old Roman vase

Sparrow Publishing, 2012, Paperback ISBN 978-0954878146

British Glass Foundation

Charity supporting Midlands glassmaking and plans for a new glass museum

http://www.britishglassfoundation.org.uk

Canal and River Trust

Information on travelling the Stourbridge Canal by boat

http://canalrivertrust.org.uk/canals-and-rivers/stourbridge-canal

Kinver Light Railway

More about the tramway that linked Stourbridge and Kinver

http://www.kinveronline.co.uk/2394/kinver-light-railway/

Lion Project

Restoration of the Iron Foundry where the Stourbridge Lion and Agenoria were built to become a new medical centre

http://www.worcesterstreetsurgery.co.uk/news/the-lion-project.html

Red House Glass Cone

Free glassmaking museum with self-guided tour, displays, exhibitions and craft studios

www.redhousecone.co.uk

Stourbridge Navigation Trust - The Bonded Warehouse

The Bonded Warehouse is now a building serving the community

http://www.thebondedwarehousestourbridge.co.uk

The Stourbridge website

Town guide including the Stourbridge Lion, glass makers and archive photos and maps

http://www.stourbridge.com/

Glas (1958)

Terrific Oscar-winning 10-minute film about the art of glass blowing

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aLS7--ZLCoI

Credits

The RGS-IBG would like to thank the following people and organisations for their assistance in producing this Discovering Britain walk

 

Graham Fisher MBE for inspiring the walk, advice on the script and providing the audio commentary

 

Mike Jackson for creating the walk and providing photographs

 

Janet Byard-Jones and the History of Wollaston Group for advice on the script and kind permission to reproduce archive images

 

Jenny Lunn for editing the walk resources

 

Rory Walsh for compiling the walk materials and providing phootgraphs

 

K James for kind permission to feature archive maps

 

Grace’s Guide for kind permission to reproduce archive images

 

Black Country MuseumsChris Allen and Julian Osley for additional images

 

thank you
block top