Harecastle Tunnel on the Trent & Mersey Canal Stoke-on-Trent from the air
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aerial photograph of Harecastle Tunnels on the Trent & Mersey Canal ,Stoke-on-Trent UK. The 1.6 mile long Harecastle Tunnel were built to suply the Stoke Potteries with coal. There are two tunnels, on the left of the photo is the James Brindley Tunnel built 1770- 1777 and next to it on the right the Thomas Telford tunnel whihc was built parallel between 1824 and 1827 but to a larger size to allow for more and bigger boats.Within the Telford Tunnel are also a number of small branch tunnels connecting to local mineworkings. The Bridley Tunnel was Britains longest Canal tunnel when opened but has been closed since a collapse at the begining of the 20th century which has never been repaired. On the left is the disused North Staffordshire Railway former which opened in 1848 and ran between Tunstall and Kidsgrove. This line ran through a railway tunnel adjacent the canal tunnels, however the line was rerouted to by pass the tunnels when the line was electrified , for which the railway tunnel was unsuitable.