This week’s Friday Photo is by Dave Evetts. “New” in this case means 1892, when this new pumping station took over from the Smethwick Engine of 1799 that made it possible to navigate the canal over Smethwick Summit without running out of water in the highest locks. This engine, built by Boulton and Watt, was in an engine house at the Birmingham end of Smeaton’s and Telford’s canal. Retirement of this very early example of Watt’s condensing engine came in 1892 with the New Pumping Station. It is situated between the two canal levels, about halfway along the Summit. Two much larger pumps inside carried in pumping canal water until the mid 1920s
It is currently looked after by the Friends of Galton Valley. Look for their open days during the summer.