Tackling the increased water flow in the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal

We are looking for the help of hillside landowners in mid Wales to tackle the issue of increased quantities of water flowing into the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal.

Wild flowers at Pontymoile on the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal Wild flowers at Pontymoile on the Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal

Over recent years, we have noticed an increase in overland water flow (surface run off) and feeder flow into the canal which causes several problems to us and to our neighbours. Large quantities of rubble, and soil are swept along by the water as it flows overground, much of this eventually being deposited in the canal as silt. This causes difficulties for boats navigating the waterway and localised reduction in water quality, this has been noticed in Pencelli, Crickhowell and Llangattock

The charity is keen to understand what’s prompted this change in water behaviour.

Heavy, persistent rainfall is one obvious reason, and we believe has led to a specific  flooding problem in Talybont-on-Usk. A drainage pipe channels water into the canal, and this has been adequate for many years, but now in heavy rain events it is unable to cope so the water found a new course – down the road, over a bridge and into the road and nearby pub.

The Trust is working with the Brecon Beacon Mega Catchment group but your help, as those closest to the land, will be invaluable in identifying the causes of the problem and, importantly, shaping the solutions. Are there different ways to manage the land? Is a physical solution – such as silt barriers – the best option?

Please get in touch with Sara James at the Trust sara.james@canalrivertrust.org.uk to share your thoughts. Your valuable experience is most welcome.

Last date edited: 29 March 2021