Start of the Blackbrook Branch

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End of the St Helens Canal
Start of the Blackbrook Branch

The Blackbrook Branch starts at the top of the Old Double Locks at the end of the St Helens Canal and extends around 1km (just over half a mile) to the north.

Waterway and Kilometerage HELENS-BB 21.180
OS Grid Reference SJ 56578 94883
Date and Time 160114 101213
Copyright © Paul Balmer

Start of the Blackbrook Branch

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Start of the Blackbrook Branch
Start of the Blackbrook Branch

Looking back along the Blackbrook Branch to the Junction, where the black and white footbridge is just visible, with the end of the St Helens Canal (to the left) and the Gerard’s Bridge Branch swinging around to the right.

Waterway and Kilometerage HELENS-BB 21.235
OS Grid Reference SJ 53565 96178
Date and Time 160114 114304
Copyright © Paul Balmer

Blackpool Road Bridge

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Blackpool Road Bridge
Blackpool Road Bridge

There’s very little clearance under Blackpool Road Bridge which carries a busy road across the canal.  Providing an opening bridge here will be very unpopular with road users which, together with the cost, means its unlikely the Blackbrook Branch will be restored for navigation in the near future, especially as it doesn’t lead anywhere.

Waterway and Kilometerage HELENS-BB 21.645
OS Grid Reference SJ 53476 96550
Date and Time 160114 111712
Copyright © Paul Balmer

Stanley Mill

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Stanley Bank Slitting Mill
Stanley Mill

Just a short distance from the path along the Blackbrook Branch of the St Helens Canal is the partially restored Stanley Mill.  A slitting mill was established here in the late 18th century, which split iron bars into thinner rods which were eventually made into nails.

In the mid 19th century this was converted into a corn mill before being demolished in the early 20th century.

Waterway and Kilometerage HELENS-BB 21.945.06
OS Grid Reference SJ 53461 96890
Date and Time 160114 113542
Copyright © Paul Balmer