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.
The South Pennine Ring traverses the rugged Pennines back and forth, taking in the Calder & Hebble Navigation from Sowerby Bridge, the Huddersfield Broad and Narrow Canals and the Ashton Canal before returning via the Rochdale Canal.
The breathtaking scenery on the journey is made even more remarkable as until recently much of the route was derelict. From Sowerby Bridge Basin the Calder & Hebble Navigation heads eastwards. Various improvements have given it the appearance more of a canal than a river but it is prone to changes in water levels. Flood defences along the route minimise such effects by preventing high water levels entering the artificial channels. Short branches and old basins make for interesting diversions.
Locks on the Calder & Hebble are operated by a handspike in place of the more usual windlass. A long-distance footpath connects with the towpath near Brighouse.
At Cooper Bridge Junction the Huddersfield Broad Canal, or Sir John Ramsden’s Canal, leaves the Calder & Hebble and continues for some 3½ miles to link with the Huddersfield Narrow Canal at Aspley Basin in the centre of Huddersfield before the route begins its long climb up the imposing Pennines. Restoration of the Huddersfield Narrow Canal, which has been dubbed ‘The River of Gold’ since being reopened in May 2001, has proved to be a catalyst for widespread regeneration. Reclamation efforts at, for example, Slaithwaite where the canal had been totally lost, are impressive.
Locks on the Huddersfield Narrow are denoted by E and W on the east and west side of the Pennines. Dropping down the west side of the hills to Dukinfield Junction the Huddersfield Narrow meets the Ashton Canal, a waterway much enhanced by developments associated with the Commonwealth Games of 2002 held in Manchester.
Ducie Street Junction in Manchester sees the Ashton Canal meeting the Rochdale Canal and a journey of 32 miles back across the Pennines to Sowerby Bridge.
Restoration of the Rochdale Canal began in earnest in the 1980s and it was reopened throughout in 2002. Reservoirs around the summit level are a consequence of a large number of locks on a relatively short length of canal. The deep lock at Tuel Lane near Sowerby Bridge replaces two earlier locks that were lost to road development and is an imposing 19 feet (5.8m) deep.
Last date edited: 14 November 2016