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.
Did you know we manage 63 of the UK's most important wildlife sites - Sites of Special Scientific Interest (SSSI)?
Through the generous support from players of People’s Postcode Lottery, we have a programme of sensitive management that will see these 10 sites improve in their value for wildlife.
Nature will benefit, local communities will benefit and the Trust will benefit, as it will make our iconic network more robust and diverse for years to come.
They are located widely across the network from the Huddersfield Narrow Canal in the North, Chesterfield Canal in the east, Montgomery Canal on the England & Wales border and Kennet & Avon Canal in the South, with the remainder in between.
We aim to improve wildlife habitat and water quality, provide information to communities who live close to the site and involve those communities in the care of the site.
Ashby Canal, LeicestershireWater vole, water shrew, rare native white-clawed crayfish, 9 species of dragonfly and a range of water plants. 1 Km of new green bank protection installation by contractors and planted by volunteers, to prevent canal bank erosion and silt entering the canal, leading to water quality improvements.
Grantham Canal, LeicestershireMany species of breeding birds, water insects and rare aquatic plants.Invasive species control, weed management by volunteers and dredging carried out by contractors to improve water quality and provide more space for wildlife.
Kilby-Foxton Section, Grand Union Canal (Leicester Line)Important community of rare Daubenton’s Bats in the Saddington Tunnel, plus rare aquatic plants and invertebrates. Water quality improvement by shade reduction, vegetation clearance, hedge laying and coppicing which allows wildlife to thrive.
Chesterfield Canal, NottinghamshireRare aquatic plants are located here. Work here involves, water quality survey to identify sites for improvement by reed bed creation, tree management and shade reduction. Damaging phosphates reduced by Phoslock water treatment.
Huddersfield Narrow Canal, Greater ManchesterFreshwater sponges, white-clawed crayfish, invertebrates and rare aquatic plants are located here. Works here involve water quality improvement by shade reduction, coppicing and vegetation clearance. Surveys carried out by local or student volunteers. Green spaces enhanced with aquatic planting.
Montgomery Canal, (2 sites) Powys and ShropshireRare protected aquatic plants, including floating water plantain (among one of the world’s best site), and several species of dragonflies are located here. Habitats will be enhanced by removal of silt, shade reduction, vegetation management, coppicing, removal of invasive plants. Disused Guilsfield Arm will be improved for wildlife. Volunteers will play key role at this site.
Bittel Reservoir, WorcestershireBreeding birds, insects and rare aquatic plantsInvasive species control, silt build up and water quality improved by coppicing, vegetation management. Improved habitat diversity with creation of ponds along the reservoir edge.
Belvide Reservoir, StaffordshireOverwintering, migratory and breeding birds, aquatic plants and insects.Silt build up and water quality improvement by coppicing, vegetation management.
Kennet & Avon Canal, BerkshireSpecies of fish, damselflies and mayflies are located here. The Canal and the River Kennet flow through chalk landscape. Banks are being eroded by livestock leading to siltation. Installation of green bank protection will help to stabilise channel and vegetation removal improve effects of shading.
Wildlife and dredging surveys are taking place, some shade reduction through vegetation clearance has been completed and hedgerows have been managed.
We have a lot more work to do - so watch this space for more updates.
Project Officer - Making special places for nature
Volunteer with us
If you would like to get involved and volunteering with us, please get in touch here.
The Canal & River Trust has top team of committed experts and enthusiasts, who help to protect our waterway environment and improve it for both people and nature. Follow this blog to find out more about the hugely varied work they carry out.