The Staffordshire & Worcestershire Canal runs through softly undulating West Midlands countryside. It skirts around the edges of Birmingham without ever becoming truly urban.
The canal was one of the major routes of the canal age, and would have been constantly busy with coal boats. It now forms part of two cruising rings, and is one of the prettiest ways to explore the region.
At one end, it connects to the River Severn at the historic Stourport Basins in the Georgian town of Stourport. The southern reaches of the canal run close to the River Stour, which is an important wetland habitat. The canal near Kidderminster and Kinver has unusual sandstone ‘cliffs’.
At its northern end, in Staffordshire, it runs through the wild pine woods and heathland of Cannock Chase. It then passes the grounds of the grand Shugborough Estate, before joining the Trent & Mersey Canal.
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