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.
From bats under bridges to weird plants splattered on stonework, the old buildings along the canal have been overrun with wildlife
View this page in Welsh
In spring and summer, bats feed at dusk, snapping up insects over the canal. We get Pipistrelle and Daubenton’s bats here, living in old buildings, bridges, trees and ivy.
The ivy that clings to the stone walls is a safe nesting place for birds, and its berries are an important winter food source. Its flowers provide nectar for bees and other insects.
The patterns on walls, like splatters of paint, are lichens. These strange organisms are a mixture of algae and fungus. Lichens can live for 100s of years, so some will be as old as the canal itself.
The walls are also festooned with mosses, liverworts and ferns, able to survive even when the stone is completely dried out.
Below the surface, the stonework is home to creatures like the white-clawed crayfish, a relative of the lobster, and freshwater sponges.
The stonework is so important for wildlife that Trust staff are careful to minimise disruption when carrying out repairs.
The best way to hear bats is to use a bat detector. The detector translates their echolocation calls into an audible sound - this is what a Pipistrelle sounds like.
Continue along the towpath to the lock. Cross the bridge, and you’ll find the next stop on the other side of the canal beside the lock gates.
Last date edited: 17 July 2015