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Day

From/To

Miles

Time

Locks

Notes

Day 1.

Gailey Wharf
(Viking Afloat)

To
Coven

Gailey Wharf

To

Coven
(Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal)

 

 

5

 

 

2 hrs

 

0 locks

A nice gentle start to your break, that gives you a straightforward lock free run to the village of Coven. The Fox & Anchor (01902 798786). Along the way you will pass Hatherton Junction, which is where the Hatherton Branch of the canal used to run off to the coal fields of Cannock.

Day 2.

Coven

To


Swindon Village

Coven

To

Bratch Locks


To
Swindon Village

 

 

8


3

 

 

5 hrs


2 hrs

 

 

6 locks


7 locks

A day full of variety starts with the lock free (but occasionally very narrow) section down past Autherley Junction (Shropshire Union Canal) to your right, shortly followed by Aldersley Junction (Birmingham Canals) to your left. You press straight on past Wolverhampton Race course to your first locks at Compton and Wightwick. In due course you arrive at Bratch Locks which is a very impressive set of three locks. Take a few moments to read the instructions on site on how to operate these locks as they are unusual! Tonight's destination is Swindon village which has a handful of shops and several pubs.

Day 3.

Swindon

To

Wolverley

Swindon Village

To
Kinver


To
Wolverley

 

5

4

 

3 hrs

2 hrs

 

5 locks

3 locks

The canal winds its lazy way South, through some idyllic Worcestershire countryside and past any number of interesting features. You might aim to have a lunch stop at Kinver and take advantage of its shops (a ten minute walk) or The Vine (01384 877291). For a bit of variety you can always pause at Cookley. Moor up after the tunnel and walk up to the village which has a few useful shops, which sits above. Finally you reach Wolverley lock and the excellent Lock Inn (01562 850581). You will find moorings above and below the lock. The village itself is well worth a visit and is just 800 metres away.

Day 4.

Wolverley

To

Stourport

Wolverley

To

Kidderminster


To
Stourport Basin

 

 

3


5

 

 

1 hr


3 hrs

 

 

2 locks


4 locks

An easy day today giving you the opportunity to do a bit of exploration. From Wolverley it is a short run to the carpet town of Kidderminster. Lots to see and do here including a chance to take a half day ride out on the wonderful Severn Valley Railway (01299 403816) From here it is only around 3 hours cruising to the unique Inland Port of Stourport on Severn. You could spend hours here looking at the basins full of boats of all shapes and sizes, as well as the two different sizes of locks leading down to the River Severn. An overnight stop here will give you the chance to see it all and stock up on some essential shopping!

Day 5.

Stourport

To

Kinver

Stourport Basin

To
Kidderminster

To
Kinver

 

5


5

 

3 hrs


2 hrs

 

4 locks


5 locks

Time to head back towards Gailey and perhaps take in a lunch stop at one of the pubs you saw on the way down! This stretch takes you through areas of woodland and meadows as it carefully follows the course of the nearby River Stour. The town of Kinver is very 'canal orientated' and provides a range of options for eating out.

Day 6.

Kinver

To

Wightwick

Kinver

To
Swindon Village


To
Wightwick

 

6



6

 

4 hrs



4 hrs

 

7 locks



11 locks

A bit everything today, but rather more locks than previously. Best to make a fairly prompt start in case you come across any delays. Lunch could perhaps be at The Green Man (01384 400532) in Swindon to build up your strength and enthusiasm for dealing with Bratch Locks. A further stretch of rolling countryside brings you finally to Wightwick Lock, which is tonight's destination. Just across the nearby main road is the Mermaid Inn (01902 760021) which also does meals. There are also shops a short distance further up the canal at Compton, but not such a good overnight location.

Day 7.

Wightwick

To


Gailey Lock

Wightwick

To

Penkridge


To
Gailey Lock

 

 

12


3

 

 

6.5 hrs

2 hrs

 

 

8 locks


5 locks

Our suggestion for today is to cruise back past our base at Gailey and head for the town of Penkridge. You can turn round just after Filance Lock (No 37) and take a stroll around the town. You could of course stay here for the last evening, The Cross Keys (01785 712826), but it does leave you with a pretty early start on the last morning in order to get back to the base in time. We recommend that you finish the day by cruising back to Gailey, but perhaps moor up just below the final lock. From here it is a walk of perhaps 1000 metres to the excellent Spread Eagle (01902 790212). If you have parked your car at the base, you might just decide to drive there (but watch out for the speed cameras!).

Day 8.

Gailey Wharf
(Viking Afloat)

Gailey Lock

To
Gailey Wharf

 

0

 

20 min

 

1 lock

All that remains now is to bring the boat up through this last lock by 9.00 am and hand it back to the boatyard staff by 9.30 am.