Route Info | Boats | Map overview of route | Cruising Notes | Maps & Guides | Links | Pub Guide


You can do this route from :
Alvechurch Marina

This short cruise is only for the energetic as it includes the 30 locks of the Tardebigge Flight which is the largest flight in Britain, and raises the Worcester & Birmingham Canal up by 220 feet through some delightful rolling countryside just southeast of Bromsgrove.

It will be long days' cruising if done over 4 days but with light summer evenings it is easily done

Worcester - Built on the banks of the River Severn, the city is famous worldwide for its beautiful porcelain.

Rich in heritage, the Cathedral dominates the skyline. Worcester offers a unique shopping experience, mixing the high street stores with an unrivaled choice of one-off independent retailers.

The Royal Worcester Visitor Centre - Take a guided around the Centre and learn the techniques of the skilled artists, and perhaps even have a go at painting your own plate. The shops stock a wide range of quality china, porcelain and gift ware, with great savings.

Route Info

Route Facts & Figures

Cruising Days : 4.00 to 7.00

Cruising Time : 29.50 hours

Total Distance : 34.00 miles

Number of Locks : 108

Number of Tunnels : 6

Number of Aqueducts : 2

Read the Cruising Notes

Read our cruising notes to help you plan your canal boat holiday

Read our cruising notes.


Download the Cruising Notes

We also have the cruising notes available for download in PDF (acrobat Reader)

Download our cruising notes.





Cruising Notes

Day 1

Turn right out of the marina and head towards Shortwood Tunnel (614 yards long), which seems longer due to the 3mph speed limit! Watch out for the drips, as tunnels are very wet. Once through, you will cruise through some very tranquil and pretty countryside, with the sound of birdsong just audible above the gentle chug of the boat, before reaching the 580 yard Tardebigge Tunnel.

Just the other side of the tunnel, you will soon spot Tardebigge Top Lock No. 58 – the first one in the mammoth flight! You can moor here for the night, as you won't have time to complete the whole flight tonight, and you can't moor overnight in the flight.

You have cruised 2 miles in a little over an hour.

Day 2

Have a good breakfast before you set off today, as you won't have much chance to stop once you start on the locks. The flight consists of 30 narrow locks over 2¼ miles, and is the longest in the United Kingdom.

It is possible to stop for a refreshment break between some of the locks, so just take your time and you will soon feel like you've been doing it all your life!

Before you know it, you will reach Tardebigge Bottom Lock No. 29.

If you have time and want to moor up, there is a really nice pub across the canal (accessible by bridge), called The Queens Head. The food here is really good, and children and dogs are allowed in the restaurant if they are well-behaved. If you're lucky, you will get a table by the window, or outside on the decking, overlooking the canal.

Moving on from here, you will soon reach Stoke Locks at Stoke Prior, and once through, you might like to moor and have a look around this pretty town.

About 10 minutes walk from the bridge, is a nice pub called The Navigation. It has a pretty, sunny beer garden, and the food is very good value for money.

Moving on from here, you will approach Astwood Locks, a flight of six, but by now you should find it much easier.

Past Hanbury Junction, you will soon be at Dunhampstead Tunnel, a mere 230 yards long, after which, you will eventually see Tibberton Top Lock No. 16, where you can moor up for the night.

You have cruised 10 miles and navigated 42 locks in just over 10 hours.

Day 3

Your first task today is navigating the Tibberton (or Offerton) Locks, then, after a pleasant and peaceful cruise, you will encounter Tolladine Lock No. 10 and Blackpole Lock No. 9. More locks follow at intervals, and soon you get to the last ones before reaching Lowesmoor Wharf – Gregory's Mill Locks.

You might like to moor up before the Gregory's Mill Locks, as about a mile or so walk away are shops including Lidl and MacDonalds, at Blackpole Road Trading Estate.

The cruise from here to Lowesmoor is lovely, with beautiful scenery. In the distance you can see Worcester Cathedral. There are allotments, and everyone waves and shouts out 'hello, as you cruise under weeping willow trees. If you are lucky, you may spot a heron or two.

As you approach Lowesmoor, there is an enormous bridge, then a sharp turn to the right, where you will soon see the sign for Worcester Marina. Do slow down here, as you will miss the winding hole, which is right at the entrance. You will then need to turn here for the return journey, and moor up at Summerhill Farm bridge No. 38, near Droitwich Spa.

You will then have cruised 12 miles and navigated 24 locks in just under 9¼ hours.

Day 4
Day 5

You are now on your return journey to Alvechurch.

All of the above moorings and places of interest are suggestions only, and you are free to create your own itinerary.

Enjoy your holiday!


NB: This route has been provided as a guide only. Information may become inaccurate or out of date. You should always check with the marina that the route is possible within your time frame, current weather conditions and canal stoppages etc.


The following boats operate on this route (subject to availability)

Alfred (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Barred Warbler (Sleeps a maximum of 8 People).

Black Necked Grebe (Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Brown Weaver (Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Coscoroba Swan (Sleeps a maximum of 12 People).

Dusky Warbler (Sleeps a maximum of 8 People).

Eagle Owl (Sleeps a maximum of 10 People).

Emperor Goose (Sleeps a maximum of 8 People).

Fieldfare (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Golden Plover (Sleeps a maximum of 5 People).

Great Owl (Sleeps a maximum of 10 People).

Herring Gull (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Horned Lark (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Iceland Gull (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Imperial Eagle (Sleeps a maximum of 7 People).

Little Gull (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Red Breasted Goose (Sleeps a maximum of 8 People).

Rock Bunting (Sleeps a maximum of 5 People).

Short Toed Eagle (Sleeps a maximum of 7 People).

Whites Thrush (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Cape Parrot (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Cymbeline (Sleeps a maximum of 8 People).

Easy Does It (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Much Ado (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Ophelia (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Outward Bound (Sleeps a maximum of 4 People).

Rammy Line (Sleeps a maximum of 6 People).

Maps and Guides

Pub Guide

Sorry, we have no pub guide for this route currently.


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The information above is provided in good faith to assist you with planning your canal boat holiday. Information accuracy cannot be guaranteed, however, if you do see something that needs updating, please don't hesitate to contact us.