Canoeing through tunnels
For your own safety, you’re not allowed to paddle (canoes, kayaks or paddleboards) through some of our tunnels, especially on parts of some larger rivers. Below is a list of all the tunnels you can paddle through.
First, here are some top tips to keep you safe.
Important information for paddling through a tunnel
- Always check before paddling through a tunnel. There may be an oncoming narrowboat.
- You must use a forward facing bright light (such as a head torch not less than 80 Lumen) and whistle to warn other craft that you're there.
- Where possible, travel through in groups.
- Please check for local guidance and restrictions, in case of potential smoke and fumes, or if grab chains are in use.
You can find more information and a video about travelling through tunnels in our boating pages.
Paddling over aqueducts
Check the aqueduct's page on our website as well as local guidance to find out whether you can paddle over it.
There are different rules depending on how you are paddling. For example, stand-up paddleboards are not allowed on aqueducts without any safety railings at the side, such as Pontcysyllte Aqueduct. Others, such as Chirk Aqueduct, do have railings, so paddleboarding is allowed.
Tunnels open for canoes and other unpowered craft
|Tunnel name||Canal||Length in metres||Method of working|
|Ashford||Monmouthshire & Brecon Canal||343||One-way working|
|Ashted||Digbeth Branch, BCN||102||One-way working|
|Barnton||Trent & Mersey Canal||525||One-way working|
|Bath no 1||Kennet & Avon Canal||50||One-way working|
|Bath no 2||Kennet & Avon Canal||54||One-way working|
|Brandwood||Stratford Upon Avon Canal||322||Two-way working|
|Bruce (Savernake)||Kennet & Avon Canal||458||One-way working|
|Chirk||Llangollen Canal||421||One-way working|
|Cookley||Staffordshire & Worcester Canal||59||One-way working|
|Cosley||Wolverhampton Level, BCN||329||Two-way working|
|Cowley||Shropshire Union Canal||74||Two-way working|
|Curdworth||Birmingham & Fazeley Canal||52||One-way working|
|Curzon||Birmingham & Fazeley Canal (Digbeth Branch)||147||One-way working|
|Drakeholes||Chesterfield Canal||135||One-way working|
|Dunhampstead||Worcester & Birmingham Canal||210||Two-way working|
|Dunsley||Staffordshire & Worcester Canal||21||One-way working|
|Edgebaston||Worcester & Birmingham Canal||97||One-way working|
|Ellesmere||Llangollen Canal||80||One-way working|
|Foulridge||Leeds & Liverpool Canal||1,490||
|Froghall||Caldon Canal||68||One-way working|
|Galton||Birmingham Main Line||122||One-way working|
|Gannow||Leeds & Liverpool Canal||511||One-way working|
|Gostly Hill||Dudley Canal||509||One-way working|
|Hyde Bank||Peak Forest Canal||285||One-way working|
|Leek||Caldon Canal||119||One-way working|
|Maida Hill (Authorised unpowered craft only)||Regents Canal||249||One-way working|
|Newbold||Oxford Canal||189||Two-way working|
|Saltersford||Trent & Mersey Canal||368||See note below*|
|Scout||Huddersfield Narrow Canal||188||One-way working|
|Shrewley||Grand Union Canal||396||Two-way working|
|Snarestone||Ashby Canal||228||One-way working|
|Summit||Birmingham Main Line||102||Two-way working|
|Whitehouses||Llangollen Canal||174||One-way working|
|Woodley (Butterhouse Green)||Peak Forest Canal||153||One-way working|
*Saltersford method of working - North Bound - enter on the hour and have 20 minutes to travel through. South Bound - enter on the half hour and have 20 minutes to travel
Last date edited: 14 April 2022