Monthly Archives: December 2011

Canal News – More Christmas stuff on the canals.

Canal News

 Santa cruises

17 December 2011 – 18 December 2011

National Waterways Museum
South Pier Road
Ellesmere Port
CH65 4FW

Shropshire Union Canal »

Join Santa for a boat trip at the National Waterways Museum.

National Waterways Museum Ellesmere Port  © Copyright Steve Fareham and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Children can visit Santa’s enchanting grotto, experience the Victorian Teddy Bears Christmas, hear a story and get a gift from Santa himself. Tea, coffee, juice, mince pies and biscuits will be available.

11am, 12.45pm and 2.30pm

Prices: Children £8, adults £4.

Visit the museum or call 0151 355 5017 to book your places – booking is recommended. The museum can only reserve places which have been paid for in advance.

Santa’s grotto in the Dudley Caverns

17 December 2011 – 18 December 2011

Dudley Tunnel
Birmingham New Road
West Midlands

Dudley No 1 Canal »

Dudley canal tunnel  Entrance to the Dudley Tunnel.  © Copyright Malc McDonald and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Take an illuminated canal boat trip into the Dudley Tunnel to Santa’s grotto deep in the limestone caverns. There will be carols, hot drinks, mince pies, seasonal entertainment and gifts for the children.

10am-5pm. Every 30 mins, trips last 45 mins.

Booking advised. To book, visit the Dudley Canal Trust website.

Santa Special boat trips

17 December 2011 – 18 December 2011

Tapton Lock
S41 7JB

Chesterfield Canal »

Tapton Lock Visitor Centre  Chesterfield Canal.   © Copyright Peter Barr and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Meet Santa on a boat trip on the Chesterfield Canal.

Take a trip on the Chesterfield Canal Trust’s trip boat John Varley. With presents for the children and mince pies and drinks for the adults. Departing from Tapton Lock on the A61 at the Tesco roundabout, S41 7JB.

First trip 10am

£6. For bookings, ring 01246 551035.


Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era 1868 – 4-4-0T – North London Railway

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era

1868 – 4-4-0T – North London Railway

William Adams’ standard passenger class for the North London suburban services built from 1868 onwards and continued by his successor J.C.Park.  The class eventually totalled 78 engines.  In 1922, the London and North Western, which had taken over the NLR some years previously, renumbered the 74 surviving engines of this class into their own stock as Nos. 2800 – 73, but several of them never carried these numbers.  On incorporation into the grouping in 1923 they were allocated Nos. 6439 – 6512 in the LMS list, but here again in many cases the engines were scraped before the renumbering was carried out.  All were taken out of service by 1929, and the last one, No. 6445, was sent to Derby for preservation, but unfortunately, it too was broken up a few years later.

Driving wheels – 5’ 6”,  Bogie wheels – 2’ 9”,  Cylinders – 17½”x 24”,  Pressure 160 lb,  Tractive effort 15,378 lb,  Weight – 49 tons 13 cwt.

 Pic – No 2823 (former No.29) at Bow in 1922.

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era 1867 – Connor 2-4-0 – Caledonian Railway

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era

1867 – Connor 2-4-0 – Caledonian Railway

A series of 38 2-4-0 engines for express work built by B.Connor between 1867 and 1874.  At that time they had the largest coupled wheels in the country.  They had the Allan type of framing of Crewe origin.  Their numbers were 30 – 48, 98 – 102, 107 – 112 and 117 – 124.  All were subsequently rebuilt, some by G.Brittain, and others by J.Lambie and J.F.McIntosh, and the last survivors did not disappear until 1921.

Driving wheels – 7’ 2”,  Cylinders 17”x 24”,  Pressure 140 lb

Some of the engines had 7’ 0” wheels and only 130 lb pressure


Pic – No.108, probably running shortly before its withdrawal in 1898.

Canal News – Huddersfield Narrow Canal, Wey & Arun Canal Trust, plus Volunteers Wanted

Canal News

 Huddersfield Narrow canal

Between Bridge 77 (Clogger Knowle Br) & Bridge 78 (Uppermill High Street Br)Huddersfield Narrow Canal, Uppermill  Looking from the side of Uppermill Museum towards, and through, bridge number 77 (Moorgate Street).    © Copyright David Dixon and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Friday 9 December 2011 – Friday 23 December 2011
Towpath Closure
Duration: Two Weeks
To facilitate gas mains renewal works
Special instructions: Please follow National Grid signed diversion route.

British Waterways apologise for any inconvenience caused.

Enquiries: 01782 785703


Wheely good donation for the Wey & Arun Canal Trust

5th Dec 2011

The Wey & Arun Canal Trust has received a brand new Land Rover Discovery, donated by Harwoods Land Rover of Pulborough in Sussex.

The vehicle has already been put to good use by one of the Trust’s working parties. Volunteers have been hard at work coppicing in Sidney Wood, where the Land Rover is the safest and most effective way of transporting materials and equipment.

In the coming months the Trust anticipates an even greater need for adequate four-wheel-drive transport between sites.

Ideal cause

Harwoods has supported the Wey & Arun Canal Trust since the mid-1990s and this latest donation of a Land Rover Discovery is the fifth to date. The firm has described the restoration work as an ‘ideal cause’ to support as the the waterway is a local concern in a rural area where such vehicles are often vital for access.

The Trust is extremely grateful to Harwoods for its ongoing support. Thousands of visitors every year already enjoy the restored sections of the canal and by donating to the cause, Harwoods is contributing to the enjoyment of many more in the future.


Public invited to ‘unlock’ iconic canal role

1st Dec 2011

Waterway lovers are being offered the chance to volunteer as a lock keeper for the Canal & River Trust, the charity that takes over British Waterways’ responsibility for 2,000 miles of waterways in England & Wales in April 2012.

A campaign will be launched at the beginning of January, looking for people to take on this iconic role on their local canals.

Lock keepers have been a fixture on the canals throughout their history. The role of the modern-day lock keeper is to provide a polite and friendly welcome to waterway visitors, assist boaters through the locks and help to maintain the area around the locks.

The roles are available in more than 50 locations across the country. Members of the public, canal societies and anyone with a passion for their local canal or river have the opportunity to be a part of with one of the oldest traditions of the waterways.

To find out more, email Willing volunteers can start quickly and no prior experience is necessary as a full induction, training and a uniform will be provided.Tardebigge Locks near Stoke Pound, Worcestershire  This is the canal looking down the Tardebigge flight of locks from the footbridge at Lock No 33. Locks 32 and 31, and a lock keeper’s cottage can be seen in this telephoto assisted image near the bottom of the flight.   © Copyright Roger Kidd and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.


Canal News – Dec 8 Worcester & Birmingham Canal & Trent & Mersey Canal

Canal News – Dec 8

A full Chasewater in 2007

Wast Hill Tunnel – Worcester & Birmingham

Friday 9 December 2011 – Friday 9 December 2011
The Fire Brigade are undertaking a fire and tunnel evacuation exercise on Wast Hill Tunnel. The exercise will test the Brigades response to a fire on a stranded boat and will include the rescue of persons and the recovery of a vessel.  The tunnel will be closed during the exercise.  Customers are advised to moor away from the tunnel portals until the tunnel is re-opened.  Please note as part of the exercise smoke will be introduced into the tunnel and this will take time to clear.

This will take place from 9.00am to 14.30 hrs

We apologise for the late notice of closure of the tunnel and the inconvenience that this may cause.

Enquiries: 01452 318000

Trent & Mersey Canal

Lock 75

Monday 5 December 2011 – Friday 9 December 2011
UPDATE (06 December 2011): Initial investigations have resulted in more substantial remedial work being identified in the lock area.  As a result of this, the stoppage will be extended until Friday 16th December 2011.

Please note that from Monday 12th December 2011 the length affected will be from Croxton Aqueduct to the top of Lock 73.

British Waterways apologises for any inconvenience caused by the extension of this stoppage

Some Early Lines – Midland and South Western Junction Railway

Midland and South Western Junction Railway

Not to be confused with the ‘old’ Midland and South Western Junction Railway, the original name of the Dudding Hill Line in London (authorised 1864, absorbed by the Midland Railway 1874). The two railways have no other connection.

The Midland and South Western Junction Railway (M&SWJR) was, until the 1923 Grouping an independent railway built to form a north-south link between the Midland and London and South Western Railways (LSWR) allowing the Midland and other companies’ trains to reach the port of Southampton.


The M&SWJR was formed in 1884 from the amalgamation of the Swindon, Marlborough and Andover Railway and the Swindon and Cheltenham Extension Railway.

The Swindon, Marlborough and Andover Railway

The Swindon, Marlborough and  Andover Railway was incorporated in 1873 and opened in three stages:

  • Swindon to Marlborough, 27 July 1881
  • Grafton to Andover, 1 May 1882
  • the complete line from Swindon to Andover was opened on 5 February 1883, by running trains over the Great Western Railway’s Marlborough branch and a section of the Berks & Hants Extension Railway, as the SM&AR was unable to complete its own line between Marlborough and Grafton.

The Swindon & Cheltenham Extension Railway (S&CER)

The S&CER was incorporated in 1881 and its line was opened that year from Swindon to Cirencester, but financial difficulties halted further construction.

Completion of the line

After the two railways amalgamated, the original intention of the S&CER to reach Cheltenham was realised in 1891, albeit by obtaining running powers over the final 7.5 miles (12 km) from a junction at Andoversford over GWR metals to reach the Midland Railway station at Cheltenham (Lansdown).

In 1892 the M&SWJR secured running powers over the LSWR Sprat and Winkle Line between Andover and Southampton; from then onwards through workings were operated for trains from the Midlands and beyond: Bradford, Manchester and Liverpool were all connected via the line with Southampton at various times over the following years.

The final section of the line to be built was the missing link between Marlborough and Grafton. The Marlborough and Grafton Railway was incorporated in 1893 and the line was opened in 1898; the M&SWJR took formal ownership of the Marlborough and Grafton Railway in 1899.

The success of the line was partly hampered by the GWR’s demand of high fees for connections with its metals at Marlborough and Swindon. The original plan to run shuttles between the M&SWJR’s Swindon Town railway station and the GWR’s Swindon Junction station lasted only a couple of years before being abandoned as too expensive. This meant M&SWJR passengers had to disembark at Swindon Old Town station and travel by road to the GWR station approximately one-and-a-half miles away. At Marlborough, until the M&SWJR built its own line south of the town, the GWR insisted that any passengers wanting to change to its trains at Savernake Low Level station had to travel south from Marlborough on the GWR’s branch line.Swindon Marlborough & Andover Railway Single Fairlie 0-4-4T of 1878.

Most locomotives were bought from Dubs & Co. (and its successor theNorth British Locomotive Companyand from Beyer Peacock..


At the Grouping in 1923 the railway became a part of the GWR. At this time the M&SWJR owned 29 locomotives, 134 coaching vehicles, and 379 goods and service vehicles.


On nationalisation in 1948 the M&SWJR was split between the Western and Southern Regions of British Railways. The line closed on 10 September 1961.

The M&SWJR today

  • A short length has been re-opened as the Swindon & Cricklade Railway
  • The M4 Motorway has been built over a short section of the route between Chiseldon and Swindon.
  • Station Industrial Estate now occupies the site of the Old Town station.


  • National Cycle Network route 45 uses a large proportion of the trackbed between Cricklade and Marlborough .
  • A short length, Andover-Red Post Junction-Ludgershall, remains open to serve the military depot at Tidworth.
  • There have been talks in recent years of a reopening of the Andover to Ludgershall part of the line to serve the growing town and the expanding military base.From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Some Early Lines – The Derwent Valley Light Railway

The Derwent Valley Light Railway

The Derwent Valley Light Railway (DVLR) (also known as The Blackberry Line) was a privately-owned standard-gauge railway running from Layerthorpe on the outskirts of York to Cliffe Common near Selby in North Yorkshire, England. It opened in 1913, and closed in sections between 1965 and 1981. Between 1977 and 1979, passenger steam trains operated between Layerthorpe and Dunnington — the entire length of track at that time. In 1993 a small section was re-opened as part of the Yorkshire Museum of Farming at Murton.

The line gained its nickname of The Blackberry Line in the days when it used to transport blackberries to markets in Yorkshire and London.


The south end of the railway, from Wheldrake to Cliffe Common, was opened on October 29, 1912, with the remainder of the line opening on July 19, 1913. Although it was constructed primarily as a freight line, passenger trains were introduced from 1913, and during World War 1 it was used as a diversionary route by the North Eastern Railway between York and Selby. Passenger services ended in 1926, though freight traffic prospered through World War ll.

In 1923, most British railway companies were grouped into 4 large companies, with the nearby North Eastern Railway becoming part of the London & North Eastern Railway. However, the DVLR remained independent, and continued to do so even after nationalisation in 1948.

In 1964, British Railways closed the Selby to Driffield Line, meaning that the junction at Cliffe Common became redundant. With the connection to Selby now gone, the DVLR was left isolated at its southern end. The line was subsequently run from the Layerthorpe end but traffic generated by the southern section of the track was light so the decision was taken to close the line between Wheldrake and Cliffe Common in 1965. The section between Wheldrake and Elvington followed in 1968. Elvington was closed in 1973, leaving only approximately 4 miles (6.4 km) of track between Layerthorpe and Dunnington on the outskirts of York.

Final years

In 1976, the owners of the railway decided to operate steam trains between Layerthorpe and Dunnington, which was the entire length of the line at that time. A regular summer service started in 1977, with J72 0-6-0T locomotive number 69023 Joem (now preserved at the North Yorkshire Moors Railway) operating the services. By 1979, there were not enough passengers to justify continuing and the service ceased. The railway continued to carry occasional freight trains to Dunnington until 1981 when the grain driers at Dunnington closed and the last major source of freight for the line was gone. On top of that the railway was in desperate need a major overhaul with the majority of the rails and buildings still being the 1913 originals. However, the owners decided that the lack of demand for freight failed to justify any plan of action other than to close the line down. The last train ran on September 27, 1981.

The line today

Until 1990, a small preservation group, the Great Yorkshire Preservation Society, was originally based at Starbeck near Harrogate. When this closed, the society members relocated to the Yorkshire Museum of Farming, and started to rebuild approximately 0.75 miles (1.21 km) of track towards York, including the section under the York by-pass. A new station was constructed using the original station buildings from Wheldrake, and the railway re-opened in 1993.

The line now runs a mixture of 6 diesel and 1 steam locomotive on Sundays and bank holidays.

The track-bed from Layerthorpe to Osbaldwick, along with part of the former Foss Islands Branch Line in York, has been converted to afoot and cycle path.  Whilst future extension of the line towards Osbaldwick may be possible, as of 2010 there are still no formal plans for this.

Canal News – Santa fun on the canal – from Waterscape

Canal Events


 Santa’s grotto boat cruise

10 December 2011

Gloucester Waterways Museum
Llanthony Warehouse
GL1 2EHWorking Narrow Boat Hadar moored in Gloucester Docks outside the National Waterways Museum

  © Copyright Keith Lodge and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Gloucester & Sharpness Canal »

River Severn »

Meet Santa in his onboard grotto on a one-hour boat cruise from the Gloucester Waterways Museum.

£7, including children’s presents, tea or coffee and a mince pie.

For times and to book, call Doreen on 01452 318200.

Carols by the canal

10 December 2011Talbot Wharf, Market Drayton, Shropshire

Shropshire Union Canal. This sizeable basin is the base for Holidays Afloat Ltd, who have been at Talbot Wharf since 1947. Since 1962 Holidays Afloat has been owned by the Machin family, now in their third generation at this boatyard.

  © Copyright Roger Kidd and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Talbot Wharf
Newcastle Road
Market Drayton

Shropshire Union Canal »

Carol singing by the Shropshire Union Canal at Talbot Wharf. Santa will arrive at the event in an illuminated narrowboat, plus there will be Christmas shopping opportunities, children’s games, hot food and mulled wine. In aid of The Birks Field Centre.



Other illuminated boats are also wanted to join Santa’s boat at the event. For details, contact Lisa Machin on 07925 109 717.

Illuminated boats and carols

10 December 2011The top lock at Stoke Bruerne

A revisit to try to reproduce SP7449 : Canal at Stoke Bruerne – 1964, taken 47 years earlier. Essentially the same scene, although many differences in detail. The tallest building is the waterways museum, the nearest is a restaurant, and in between there are houses.

  © Copyright M J Richardson and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

The Canal Museum
Stoke Bruerne
NN12 7SE

Grand Union Canal »

Celebrate Christmas at the Canal Museum at Stoke Bruerne. Take an illuminated boat trip and enjoy carol singing by the canal.

There will be a prize for the best illuminated boat, hot soup and roasted chestnuts and Christmas shopping in the museum shop and other canalside gift shops.


Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era 1866 – Great Southern & Western Railway, Ireland – 0-6-0s

Steam Locos of a Leisurely Era

 1866 – Great Southern & Western Railway, Ireland – 0-6-0

No. 200 in unrebuilt condition in 1934

 This was the only class of engine on any Irish railway which was built in sufficient numbers or over a long enough period to be regarded as a standard type.  The first engines, Nos. 112, 113 and 115 came out in 1866, followed by Nos. 148 and 150 in 1867.  They were built to the designs of A.McDonnell, who had been locomotive superintendent since 1864, and the class multiplied to a considerable extent for a comparatively small railway, until he went to the North Eastern in 1883.  Thereafter further small batches of about half a dozen at a time appeared under each of McDonnell’s three successors, the last coming out in 1903, by which time the class totalled 111 engines, easily a record for the GS&WR or any other Irish line.  The numbers of the engines eventually filled the complete series 101 – 200, although by no means built in sequence, whilst the final additions of 1901-3 were Nos. 223, 229, 232, 240-3 and 253-6.  Nearly all were built at the Company’s own works at Inchicore.

A plain and straightforward design, not unlike the Dx class of the LNWR, the engines have always been the maids of all work on the GS & WR, which was later the Great Southern and finally the Coras Iompair Eireann, and even though the system is now almost entirely dieselised these old veterans are as much in evidence as any other more modern class on the few steam workings which still remain.  The only major rebuilding had consisted in the provision of Belpaire boilers with superheaters and extended smokeboxes, and most of the remaining survivors are in this form.  Many of the earlier engines to be scrapped had never been rebuilt, the first to go being No. 189 in 1922.

Withdrawal proper really began in 1926.  As late as 1959 about half of them still remained in serviceable condition, although with little work to do.  No. 184 has been restored in its old GS & WR colours for preservation.

Driving wheels – 5’ 1¾”,  Cylinders – 18”x 24”,  Pressure – 160 lb,  Tractive effort 17,170 lb,  Weight 37 tons 13 cwt.,  Classification – J15No. 127 as rebuilt, at Valencia harbour, the most westerly railhead in Europe, in 1955

Canal News from Waterscape

Canal News from



Why is canal tunnel on the move?

Netherton Tunnel

The last tunnel built at a cost of over £300,000 it opened on the 20th of August 1858. It was built with two tow paths and wide enough for two boats. Thus is eased congestion in the narrow Dudley tunnel that had to be legged through. Its over 2.5km long, straight and now unlit. Take a torch!

  © Copyright Ashley Dace and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

29th Nov 2011

Engineers from British Waterways are investigating after some sections of the Netherton Tunnel near Dudley were found to be moving.

The tunnel, on the Birmingham Canal Navigations, is 150 years old. Monitoring over the past few years has shown that the lining of the centre sections is moving, causing some of the bricks to bulge and crack.

Over the next two weeks, tunnel experts will be carrying out detailed ground investigations to find the cause of the movement. They will take samples of the earth and rock surrounding the canal tunnel by drilling bore holes at various intervals along the crown (roof) and the side wall sections. These samples will allow specialists to test what material surrounds the tunnel. This, together with other detailed surveys, will help them determine the nature of the movement and the possible cause.

Expert investigation

British Waterways’ senior manager Dean Davies said: “The Netherton Tunnel is well known to suffer from ground movement, and we do monitor this on weekly basis. We are currently concerned about the amount of movement happening in the centre section of the tunnel, which is a common weak spot in tunnel design. We need to carry out further investigations to find out exactly what may be causing the ground above and below the tunnel to move.

“The tunnel is still structurally sound. However, we need to start looking into this problem now and also decide how best to stop the movement getting any worse. Ultimately, we want to ensure the tunnel lasts another 150 years”

During the works, the canal will restricted to boat traffic at various intervals and the west side towpath will remain closed. For details of restrictions, check the waterscape stoppage pages or sign up for email alerts.

Netherton Tunnel and Tividale Aqueduct

Coming out of the northern end of Netherton Tunnel, Dudley, looking towards Tividale Aqueduct, which carries the Wolverhampton Canal Level over the Netherton Tunnel Branch.

  © Copyright Martin Clark and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

 Lock Keeper of the Year


British Waterways’ employee is top of the locks

Saltersford Locks on the River Weaver

The River Weaver here divides as the original course of the river crosses the canalised Barnton Cut, more or less at the locks. The Trent & Mersey canal runs close and parallel near the top of the wooded bank in the background. Public footpaths run between the river and the canal towpath and along the river bank upstream to the Winnington swing bridge and (the North Cheshire Way) Dutton Locks downstream.

  © Copyright Mike Harris and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

1st Dec 2011

The Hotel Boat section of the Association of Pleasure Craft Operators (APCO) has awarded Bryn Jones, a British Waterways’ lock keeper on the River Weaver with its annual Lock Keeper of the Year award.

Bryn has worked for British Waterways for almost 30 years and has over 20 years’ experience as a lock keeper. He is familiar with the whole of the River Weaver navigation, working as relief lock and bridge keeper before taking responsibility for Saltersford Locks.

Recipients are nominated and voted for by all APCO Hotel Boat operators so that they can recognise the support and assistance they receive as they take holidaymakers around Britain’s inland waterways. The award was presented at the Association’s recent national AGM, held this year in Llangollen at a hotel beside the River Dee.

Neil Thomsett and Gill Cookson, joint chairs of the Hotel Boat section of APCO, presented the award to Bryn, who was joined by British Waterways North Wales & Borders colleagues Wendy Capelle and Stephen Maguire.

Fantastic ambassador for the River Weaver

The River Weaver near Anderton, Cheshire

The deciduous woodland is part of the Anderton Nature Park east of the famous boat lift. The narrowboats will use the lift to join the Trent and Mersey Canal fifty feet higher in level.

The River Weaver is navigable in its lower reaches, and flows in a curving route anti-clockwise across west Cheshire and into the Manchester Ship Canal. Before that canal was built the river flowed into the River Mersey at Weston Marsh.

  © Copyright Roger Kidd and licensed for reuse under this Creative Commons Licence.

Neil thanked Bryn for all his hard work, great humour and invaluable information, saying: “The Weaver navigation is such a lovely river – beautiful Cheshire countryside, fascinating industry and the drama of descending the Anderton Boat Lift and entering the vastness of Saltersford Lock. Bryn is always on hand to answer holidaymakers’ questions and help hotel boat crews as he works us through.

“Saltersford is a big deep lock and our safety is paramount for Bryn, whilst he imparts amazing statistics and history to our clients marvelling at the 1.4 million gallons of water the lock holds. Meanwhile he is a fantastic ambassador for the area around the Weaver, showering holidaymakers with tourism information and guiding us to local amenities. Plus anything he doesn’t already know he will find out and pass on as we return up river.”

Bryn was delighted to receive the award and adds: “I am honoured to win the award on behalf of the Weaver team, it is a first for the river and it is wonderful to hear how the experience of boating the River Weaver and the service that British Waterways gives is so appreciated by the hotel boat holidaymakers and crews.”


Chairs appointed for Canal & River Trust Waterway Partnerships29th Nov 2011

The Canal & River Trust has appointed chairs to a number of the Waterway Partnerships that will play a role in the management of canals and rivers across the network.

Chairs have been appointed in Manchester & Pennine, North Wales & Borders, South Wales & Severn and Kennet & Avon. The chairs for the Partnerships in the West Midlands and North West, who have, to date, been trials, have been asked to and have agreed to continue.

A chair has also been recruited for the Museums Partnership, which will be the successor to The Waterways Trust Museums Management Board.

Supporting local waterways

Tony Hales, chair of The Canal & River Trust said: “I am delighted that such a high calibre of people have come forward to chair these important positions of governance within the Canal & River Trust.

“Each will prove to be well placed to champion the interests of their local waterways. The Waterways Partnerships are integral to the stewardship and development of the network, providing new perspectives and insights, opening up new resources and ideas, and giving local people a greater opportunity to support their local canals and rivers: something that is integral to the success of the Canal & River Trust.”

Chairs are now being sought for the remaining Waterway Partnerships in the North East, Central Shires, East Midlands, South East and London and recruitment for the All Wales Partnership is continuing.

Calling on volunteers

The Canal & River Trust is also calling on volunteers who want to actively support the two-century old canal network to join their local Partnership and get involved and advise on how the waterways are used and looked after. Each Partnership will consist of at least eight volunteers who will be drawn from the local community and who will collectively have a broad spectrum of expertise relevant to the development of the waterways.

Experience in fundraising, volunteering, finance, planning and regeneration, boating, environment, heritage, engineering, community engagement, and working with partners in local government are all relevant.

All positions on the Partnerships will be unpaid, but agreed expenses will be reimbursed.

Those interested in joining a newly appointed chair on their local Waterway Partnership or in applying for one of the remaining positions of chair will be able to find role descriptions and application details at from Thursday 1 December.

Applications for membership open on Friday 9 December 2011.