Dudley Tunnel Protest 1960

dudleytunnelboat440pxIn 1960 the news was leaked that British Rail planned a Dudley Container depot and were proposing to remove the iron bridge crossing the Tipton end of the Dudley Tunnel and infill the canal with an earth embankement to carry heavier loads. British Waterways didn't seem to resist this move which would have destroyed the canal through the tunnel.

In the autumn enthusiasts from the IWA's Midland Group arranged a protest cruise throgh the tunnel. On a cold very foggy day they gathered in the Park Head Basin encouraged by Robert Aickman and crept through the gloomy waterway, When boats stuck they took on water ballast and eventually managed to get through. The Press gave good publicity and local support was gained.

The Dudley Tunnel Trust was formed and began running tunnel trips with an electric boat.

Canal Facts

dudleytunnelboat220pxDudley Tunnel is a canal tunnel on the Dudley Canal Line No 1, England.

At about 3,172 yards (2,900.5 m) long, it is now the second longest canal tunnel on the UK canal network today.