No-one mentions the Weston Arm…

The Weston Arm of the Montgomery Canal ran from Welsh Frankton to Weston Lullingfields, and was built as part of the Ellesmere Canal. It was originally going to be the main line, taking traffic from the River Mersey at (what is now) Ellesmere Port to the River Severn at Shrewsbury, however like so many canal schemes it was never completed as intended. It ended up being closed in 1919 after a breach. Canal books often make many references to the Weston Arm, but few give it any real detail. After seeing the tiny stub of the canal that remains, I wondered where it went.

I’d already spent a little time looking at Google Earth, and cross-referencing with old maps. It sat on my computer for a few months, doing nothing, until a friend mentioned that he’d been wondering the same. So this is for Martin! The file below should open in Google Earth (which you can get from

weston branch.kmz


  1. Hi Hywel,
    Weston Arm
    Although you can make out a basin as the Weston Arm comes up to the Tetchill – Rednal road (and remains of blue brick bridge abutment) there is very little to show on the other side of this road going towards Weston. But from Weston you can make out the canal one field away from the basin going towards Shrewsbury, and running back from Weston towards Hordley etc there are several lengths still in water. And I have seen a couple of bridges en route, but can’t be sure where and if still there. However have done the Weston end and Hordley wharf bit in the last few months. However I’ve never known where the arm was intended to enter the Severn – anyone know? Just discovered it was to go via Newtown, Baschurch and enter the Severn near Fitz – makes sense. Found in A Topographical Dictionary of England by Samuel Lewis & Co. published in 1831.
    What about the Frwdd canal for your next hunt?
    Kind regards

  2. Hi Sandra, The Ffrwd canal is a harder proposition – it was abandoned much earlier, so the maps of the area either aren’t old enough, or are very poor. I have got a part-finished Google Earth file, but there’s not much information in it. I have been to have a look on the ground though, and there is a ditch with a tiny bit of wall!
    At some point I have a few other canals I’d like to trace too.

  3. I get an error 404 when I try to download the kmz file; has it evaporated or is it elsewhere?

    And do you know if there are any photos extant of the Weston branch?

  4. Hey Paul,
    There was indeed an error with the link, which I’ve now corrected.
    As for photos, I have seen very few of the remains of the branch, and none of the branch while it was in water.

  5. Thank you, downloaded and works. I find I was looking in quite the wrong set of fields for the remains. Better luck next time I’m down that way I hope.

  6. An astounding cosmic alignment! The Nine Ladies Stone Circle in Derbyshire has, in addition to its circular array (of 10 stones actually), a stone known as the King Stone some 40 metres away. A line from the centre of the circle, through the King Stone, and extended for 91.7km*, hits EXACTLY (where’s my green ink?) your marker for the end of the branch!!!!!!!!!!

    *That’s EXACTLY 100 Roman kilometres- within 0.2%! Spooky!

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