THE BIRMINGHAM CANAL NAVIGATIONS 1950 TO 1977
Much has been written about the history of the BCN, the dense industrial network of canals covering Birmingham and the Black Country, but this book takes a different view. It’s based on the large collection of photographs acquired by the Industrial Railway Society, taken by the late Philip Weaver, and it depicts the relatively recent history of the network – but still long enough ago that there have been some drastic changes. The photographs show the latter days of cargo boats, the construction of motorways above the canals in the 1960s, a forlorn Gas Street Basin in the 1950s, the same site during the early days of the revival in the 1960s, and even a British Waterways trip-boat painted immaculate white for a promotional event. It’s an important record of scenes from not so long ago, many of which are barely recognisable today.
The Birmingham Canal Navigations 1950 to1977, compiled by Mike Harrison, Historic Narrow Boat Club, hnbc. org.uk, £12, 978-0-9927321-1-0