Thursday, 27 September 2012

Walking for Heritage; More Toilets

...and a viaduct with pieces missing!

Thus post contains two elements, neither of which are on the actual walk guide, but are on the route. I have included them as points of interest as you will see them as you walk the route!

More Toilets
This time, a Victorian public urinal! Gosh I spoil you all don’t I?!

Located on the corner of Great Barr St and Heath Mill Lane, Digbeth, this structure has been closed off from the public. I only know about it and what it is because when I was at college in an attempt to become a plumber, we had a full scale discussion about it!

As far as I know, the inside is just a metal wall which gents can pee against, and some poor Victorian child probably had the job of cleaning it. It is quite a fine metal structure and the detail on the external panels is very decorative. I think it is cast iron. 

Partial Viaduct
This is quite something. This wall, as seen on Heath Mill Lane (if walking from Deritend back towards Eastside), doesn’t look like much. It’s only a wall, right?


Once you step onto the towpath and look back up at it, you will see that it is part of a huge brick built structure, a bridge, that goes across the canal. There are no signs to tell you anything about this, but a look on my old mate Google Earth at this area seems to suggest that this was built for use as a railway bridge! I am not sure if it was ever used to carry tracks through this area. It seems quite strange to knock out the archways over the road sections if it was just built to look pretty.

It is quite a peculiar thing to notice once you know that it isn’t just another really high brick wall! You can read more about them both here.

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