It is said that there are more miles of canals in Birmingham than in Venice. The canals contributed much to the growth of Birmingham bringing coal and merchandise into the town. From 1838 to 1932 Birmingham continued to grow and absorb neighboring communities. Originally independent canal companies were responsible for these waterways, today run by British Waterways, whose local office at Ocker Hill serves Birmingham and the Black Country. Although part of the national network, each Birmingham canal retains its original identity and most are still in waster and regularly used. This illustrated book captures the old Birmingham canals under busy trade days and compares them to the twilight years and the modern more recreational age.