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
We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.
No, we’re not talking about keeping GRP or plastic boats off the canal, but how boaters can contribute to reducing plastic pollution of our canals and rivers.
Anyone who watched Blue Planet 2 cannot fail to be aware of the tremendous amount of damage plastic litter is causing to our seas and rivers and aquatic wildlife. Our canals and rivers are havens for wildlife too, and many of them ultimately flow out into the sea. So how can boater’s help to reduce the tide of plastic rubbish polluting the places we care about?
Let’s start with simple domestics onboard. Shopping, cooking, washing and cleaning, it’s almost impossible at present to totally avoid purchasing goods either made from, or wrapped in plastic. Food wrappings, cleaning products, personal care items and much more all involve plastics of a variety of different types. Some plastics can be recycled, but others must be disposed of in household waste.
The Trust offers boaters many facilities to dispose of domestic waste whilst out cruising, and an increasing number of recycling facilities too. However, there’s things all boaters can do to help prevent boater’s domestic rubbish from contributing to plastic pollution in our canals and rivers.
Whilst natural rope fenders are available, most boats tend to have fenders made out of plastic, whether it’s a balloon, pipe, cylindrical, corner, chubby, anchor or buoy. At a recent lock stoppage, the boating team were amazed to count so many lost plastic pipe fenders lurking in the bottom of the lock.
A simple way to prevent your fenders adding to the plastic in the canal is to make sure that you don’t have them dangling when cruising, bow and stern fenders excepted. When your fenders are in use, normally only whilst moored up, ensure they are properly secured. Alternatively, why not consider changing to natural rope fenders?
It’s not just boater’s rubbish in the canal, sadly it’s everybody’s rubbish, some blown from the streets and roads, and some even fly-tipped into our treasured waterways.
Why not consider helping clean up by joining a Plastic Patrol or Towpath Taskforce? Together we can all reduce the impact of plastic pollution. There are loads of events to choose from all around the country. Some events even involve paddle boarding and canoeing if you are feeling adventurous. Find out more at Towpath Taskforce or Plastic Patrol.
If you don’t fancy taking part in an organised event, why not pledge to pick up and dispose of at least one piece of canal side litter a day? Every piece of litter removed is one less piece of rubbish that could potentially foul a lock gate, foul your boat’s propeller, or make the bottom too close to the top!
Find out what the Canal & River Trust's boating team have been up to.