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.
A walk along your local waterway this month should deliver some welcoming signs that winter is in retreat and spring is marching forwards. Ecologist Paul Wilkinson tells us more.
On a sunny day, the delicate but common lesser celandine opens its golden yellow rays to the sunshine. This little plants likes to be near shade and is one of the first yellow flowers of the year.
Another shrub that can often be covering in pollinators is the Goat or Pussy willow, its round catkins laden with pollen can often yield a small tortoiseshell butterfly too.
Another early flowering plant but perhaps even more common is the white deadnettle, so called because it resemble a small stout nettle, but with white snapdragon type flowers that are rich in nectar – and edible. This plant is welcomed by the queen bees emerging from winter hibernation.
If your walk takes you past woodland, you may be lucky enough to see the wonderful Primrose, its flowers are edible but surely too precious to pick on such a lovely spring day.
As you approach the hard standings of Lock landings, don’t discount them, take a closer look, you might find the delicate little white flowers of the Whitlowgrass, a small plant with a rosette of leaves and gentle, nodding white flowers.
Along canal banks, especially where a river or stream runs alongside the canal, you might find the tassel flowers of Butterbur, these flower spikes appear before the huge leaves appear and dominate the canal bank. The leaves were once thought to be used to wrap butter, a bio-degradable sustainable packaging, however, research is suggesting that although the leaves do seem to be a herbal remedy for migraines and maybe even hay fever, there are other compounds within the leaves that may cause harm if eaten.
Support canal wildlife
Will you be part of Waterside Watch and help protect the homes and habitats of some of our most beloved species?
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.