In the summer holidays in 2017, the North West team ran a 10 day roadshow to promote key water safety messages and wellbeing activities people can do on or by the water. And we're planning to do more in 2018.
This year, stops along the way included Burnly, Blackburn, Glasson Dock, Wigan Pier, Bootle and Lancaster. The main aim was to promote our key water safety messages (better ways to cool off) as well as share the space, Desmond Family Canoe Trail and provide customer information to help people take advantage of the wellbeing activites available from our canals.
Overall we spoke to over 3,000 people during the events. But we also featured in many local newspapers and had a number of radio interviews (plus Facebook Live which received over 5,000 views). This was the first year of this scheme and considering our team here in the North West Waterways and our partnership only had five weeks to plan, it was such as success that we're already planning 2018.
In 2018 we are looking to roll out an extended 15 day roadshow. There'll be even more daily activities on offer to allow people from all our local communities to come down and find out how to:
And maybe get a free icecream too!
This will be a very ambitious and intense programme but it is hoped that great positive publicity will be achieved like it was for the roadshow in 2017.
Our team also uses these roadshows as a great way to engage with our key stakeholders and local partner organisations in those communities. And again, it's about improving opportunities for people to out and get active and doing it safely. One group the North West team have been working with for a while is the Desmond Family Canoe Trail.
We're responsible for delivering the trail - a privately funded youth engagement project. It's designed to engage with young people from 16 to 25 to involve them in the waterways that run through their communities.
In this case, to develop the longest canoe trail of its kind in the UK. Running over 160 miles from Liverpool along the Leeds & Liverpool Canal and the Aire & Calder Navigation to Goole, it will connect some of the north of England’s most urban communities with some of its more scenic and beautiful waterways.
Beth Cropper, Desmond Family Canoe Trail Project Leader, said "We enjoyed getting involved in the North West Summer Roadshow as we're committed to promoting safety on the water and it was a great opportunity along the trail to promote what we do alongside the North West team."
Last date edited: 5 June 2018