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After Barbridge junction the Shroppie now commences an almost westerly course over the great Cheshire plain, past old villages called Calveley, Bunbury (with two staircase locks) and Beeston.

Calveley is a major producer of Cheshire cheese, and Beeston has an amazing lock which is made of cast iron flanged plates. You will quickly become aware of the London to Holyhead railway, which now joins the same route as the canal and you will see and hear several noisy trains, as they speed past en route to Holyhead.

After you pass Goldstone Wharf - again with a great canalside pub at Bridge 55 - you glide into a VERY deep dank and gloomy cutting at Woodseaves.

How the old "navvies" who built this canal managed to construct such a gigantic cutting with the primitive tools that they had 150 years ago is beyond comprehension - no power tools, or JCB diggers for them, just brute strength and determination and pickaxes and shovels - and lots of courage....

) that you find that you are now sitting on top of a viaduct, high above the surrounding countryside.

It is one of the most scenic of all the canals, and is much loved by narrowboaters up and down the country who use it. The canal was one of last on the whole network to be built.

Many of the navigators who built it had previously worked on the newfangled railways, which were starting to be constructed all over the country.

It suffered several landslips, and workmen were killed, both during its construction and afterwards because of the landslips.

Just beyond the embankment you will see on the left the Shrewsbury and Newport Branch of the canal, which goes off towards the modern town of Telford. Beyond the junction there is another long stretch (or "pound") without locks, when you can admire the quiet quntessentially English countryside.

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