At 10.00 am we all attended a talk by local historian Keith Hodgkins who told us about the Ten things for which Tipton is famous. It was really interesting to see the changes which have taken place over the years and how so many canals have been lost in Tipton. At one time there were around 16 miles of canals in the tiny parish of Tipton but this has reduced to about a third of that now. The talk was held in the Library in Owen House on Owen Street but unfortunately nobody knows where the name came from. Could it have been from my ancestors???
The Ten Famous things are: William Perry; The Newcomen Steam Engine; Palethorpes Sausages; Jack Holden of the Tipton Harriers, Common Wealth Games Champion marathon runner; Bean Cars who built the car which was first to travel across Australia; Bloomfields iron works which developed the Pig iron Boiling Process which dramatically increased the output; A lifting iron bridge which is now on display in the Black Country Museum; Horseley Iron Works which made many of the iron bridges on the canals; The first iron and steam powered ship, the Arron Manby, in 1822, which was transport in pieces by canal to London and then taken across the channel to France to work; The largest Anchor to be made.
Soon we were travelling under the M5 and making the turn at Oldbury Junction to go up the 6 Oldbury Locks to the Pump House. The locks are unusual in that they are all in a straight line along the towpath side.
In the evening we all went down to the Pump House for a great social evening with Real Ale food.
A big thank goes to Stuart and Marie who organised the Explorer Cruise and made sure that we all had a great time. They both put in a lot of hard work to make sure that the trip was enjoyable and interesting as well as educational for us all. I would recommend this cruise to anyone who has not yet explored the beautiful BCN. I must not forget Brian on Thursday’s Child who was always up early to ensure that we had a smooth passage through all the locks.