Read the story of how the Canal & River Trust came to be
Work for us
We have vacancies across all of our waterways and in the offices, museums and attractions that support them. We're one of the UK's biggest charities and we take pride in everything we do
If you're thinking of getting in touch then please take a moment to look through these pages as we probably have the answer on our website
Planning & design
All you need to know about planning and design on our canals and rivers
Find a winter mooring
Find a cosy section of canal to hunker down in this winter
10 reasons to take up canoeing
It's a great way to get fit and explore our waterways at the same time
Share the Space
Take a look at our common sense guide to sharing the towpath
Find a place to fish
From reservoirs to club-managed canals and river stretches - find your nearest place to fish
Get your free guide
Download your free guide today and start exploring the waterway nature near you
Download your free guides
You've nine free days out guides to choose from - where will you go first?
Find a walk near you
Are you ready to ramble? Find a waterside stroll or a satisfying hike along our beautiful canals and rivers
Take a look at our upcoming events here.
Find your favourite waterway
With over 95 canals, rivers, reservoirs, docks and navigations, find out more about your favourite waterway
Something for everyone
Help us make a difference and have fun along the way. Find your perfect volunteer role today
Join our team
Could you join your local Towpath Taskforce team and help us to keep our canals looking lovely?
Desmond Family Canoe Trail
If you're aged 16-25 and would like to get involved with this exciting project, please get in touch
Could you be a volunteer lock keeper?
Find out what's involved with this popular volunteering opportunity
Why we think canals are better with Friends
Become a Friend of the Canal & River Trust today and you’ll open yourself up to new experiences and endless opportunities.
We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.
Find out more about our volunteers and the important role they play in the Manchester, Pennine & Potteries region.
We provide our volunteers with ongoing support, encouragement and the practical help they truly deserve.
Volunteering groups are continually out and about around the waterways, undertaking a wide range of projects.
Andy Whitehouse - Interim Volunteer Development Co-ordinator
John Keaveny - Volunteer Team Leader – Trent & Mersey Canal South and Caldon Canals
Ashleigh Carden - Volunteer Team Leader – Trent & Mersey Canal North and Macclesfield Canal
Phil Smith - Volunteer Team Leader – Peak Forest Canal and Huddersfield Narrow Canal
Jodie Weathers - Volunteer Team Leader – Rochdale Canal, Ashton Canal and Manchester Bolton & Bury Canal
We produce a newsletter with details of volunteering events and opportunities coming up. You can find the most recent editions available below:
Issue - December 2017
Issue - June 2017
Issue - March 2017
Issue - January 2017
If you'd like to be added to our volunteering mailing list, please Contact us
Details of forthcoming volunteering events can be found in the list below or by searching for an opportunity near to you.
Peak Forest Canal
Local community group carrying towpath improvements, vegetation work and planting between Woodley and Romiley on the Lower peak Forest canal
At key locations around the country, we’re establishing visitor ‘welcome’ stations and you could be at the heart of this welcome.
We are looking for volunteers to help us maintain the canal at Bugsworth Basin. This is a Scheduled Ancient Monument and was a busy canal/tramway interchange basin.
Clean Up Chadderton are the volunteer group working to improve the stretch of the Rochdale Canal which runs through the OL1 and OL9 area. We work on vital tasks such as planting hedgerows, tackling problem plants, litter picking, and generally making the waterside a more attractive place for everyone to enjoy.
Various tasks including vegetation clearance, painting, litter picking towpath repairs, fencing, and dry stone walling.
Trent & Mersey canal, Etruria, Staffordshire
Various tasks undertaken, including vegetation clearance, painting, litter picking towpath repairs, fencing, dry stone walling, and other tasks.
Standedge, Huddersfield Narrow Canal, Yorkshire
Role to include co-ordinating existing and new volunteers during a variety of tasks. It will include a variety of opportunities including, outside garden and maintenance work, and indoor DIY/maintenance.
Opportunity to gain experience within event organising and hosting, Wedding Support and Social Media. For more information please contact Claire Atkinson on 01484 844298
General ground duties, Painting, Cutting Grass, Planting Borders, Weed Removal, Fence repairs etc, For more information please contact Claire Atkinson on 01484 844298.
Opportunity to assist with general enquires, boat booking and stock movement. For more information please contact Claire Atkinson, on 01484 844298
Rochdale, Rochdale Canal, Greater Manchester
To volunteer to work alongside Canal & River Trust staff maintaining our offside vegetation through the winter, at various locations on Rochdale and Ashton canals. For more information please contact Mr. Nick Atkinson on 07824 519032
To work along side our busy Customber Service team at our Rochdale office 2 - 3 days a week depending on availability.
Walsden, Rochdale Canal, West Yorkshire
Planting hedgerows, tackling problem plants, painting locks, mending towpaths. All equipment provided.
Littleborough, Rochdale Canal, Greater Manchester
Our Towpath Taskforce team meets on the first Tuesday of every month. It's a great opportunity to try volunteering with the Trust with no need for longer commitment. Typically we plant hedgerows, tackle problem plants, paint locks and mend towpaths.
Standedge Visitor Centre
Join our fantastic team of education volunteers based at Standedge Tunnel. Our education volunteers lead visits for primary school groups and make sure every aspect of a visit runs smoothly, from greeting the coach at Marsden Train Station at the beginning of the day to waving goodbye at the end. We are looking for volunteers who can support our education programme by working with other team members to deliver interactive education sessions focusing on local history, habitats and water safety to children mainly aged 7 – 11 years old. This role requires you to commit to between 3 and 4 days per month during school hours. Find out more about our Explorers resources here: https://canalrivertrust.org.uk/explorers
Bosley, Macclesfield Canal, Macclesfield
Across the Rochdale Canal, Greater Manchester
We are looking for an enthusiastic and committed individual to help us engage more volunteers in practical activities on the waterways.This will involve offer training and development to other volunteers who want to make this happen. This role will involve working alongside our Volunteer Team Leader to assist in preparing, promoting, leading and delivering practical volunteering tasks. This could involve improving wildlife habitats, carrying out heritage conservation tasks and tidy-up tasks such as litter picking or painting.
Red Bull, Trent & Mersey Canal, Stoke-on-Trent
Lyme Green, Macclesfield Canal, Sutton
This is a new community adoption group looking for volunteers with a desire to make a difference to their local area. The aim of the group is to transform and improve access and public use of the towpath and environment between Lyme Green and Fools Nook, as it passes out of Macclesfield and past the Cheshire villages beyond. The canal has a special significance in Sutton for it was here that James Brindley, of canal building fame, served as an apprentice to Abraham Bennett from 1733 to 1740.
A friendly and dynamic volunteer group making improvements and raising awareness and public use of the historic canal basin and attractive canal beyond. Tasks can include vegetatrion management, painting, tidy-ups and dry stone walling; the group is also associated with organising the popular annual event Whaley Water .
Last date edited: 4 January 2018