We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.

2017 Projects

2017 is another big year for our arts programme, we are again working with some diverse and exciting partners to bring together the best of waterway arts.

Turnerwood Lock evening arts performance

Here is a list of some of our current and upcoming projects we are involved in this year. Please go to the arts calendar for the full programme of dates.    

Super Slow Way

This major £2.5m arts programme is being shaped by artists and people of Pennine Lancashire. Led by Super Slow Way’s director, Laurie Peake, local, national and international artists and arts organisations are working with communities on commissions and residencies inspired by the Leeds & Liverpool Canal. Upcoming highlights will include O.K The Musical in April, a co-commission with Tate Liverpool, which brings Berlin-based artist Christopher Kline to Lancashire and Liverpool to work with community groups on a musical about his hometown Kinderhook, New York. In the summer, Super Slow Way will be bringing HOME47 to Lancashire as part of a co-commission with Manchester International Festival. The work by Sharmeen Obadi-Chinoy (double Oscar winning filmmaker) is a film installation responding to the 70th anniversary of the partition of India and the creation of Pakistan and the resulting mass migration. In the Autumn a new season, Fabrications, will explore the use of textiles in contemporary art and the vibrant history and future of the local textiles industry fed by the canal corridor through a series of commissions, residencies, workshops and a large symposium event. For further information visit Super Slow Way 

The Ring (Worcester Ring)

The Ring is an 18 month series of events and commissions celebrating the region’s canals and rivers, focused around the 21 mile circle of waterways made up by the Worcester & Birmingham Canal, the Droitwich Canals and the River Severn.  Artists will draw their inspiration from connecting with local people and the area’s cultural heritage before producing an original memorable artwork or performance in 2018. Weekend-based events will excite and draw new visitors to the waterways and towns and tie-in with local arts festivals. For more information visit: The Ring 

June-September 2017 (artists residencies begin at each gateway)

Floating Cinema 2017

The Floating Cinema led by Up Projects and supported by the Canal & River Trust presents In Dialogue: a FREE programme of feature films, documentaries and a newly commissioned artwork entitled On the Bench by Leeds based artist, Harry Meadley. The commission is a series of eight short films by Meadley featuring interviews with individuals that live and work in the eight waterway locations where The Floating Cinema will stop. The corresponding film programme devised by Up Projects has been devised in response to the themes of perseverance, determination and dedication that feature in Meadley's work.

The following eight locations will be visited during the tour; Sheffield, Rotherham, Swinton, Doncaster, Thorne, Goole, South Ferriby and Hull. See HERE for full details about the film programme and how to book tickets.

Summer 2017 (1 July – 13 August)

Canal Laureate

Writing a blog incorporating incisive, satirical poems the Canal Laureate, Luke Kennard, continues to reveal his humorous, surreal canal-side journeys. Luke Kennard is the second Canal Laureate appointed by the Canal & River Trust in partnership with The Poetry Society. The poems and other strange observations from the narrow fluid road are published on the project blog www.waterlines.org.uk, where you can also find out about forthcoming public events. You can also follow his adventures via Twitter @canalpoetry.

From March 2017

Changing Places

Lea Navigation, Peak Forest Canal, Birmingham New Mainline, Shropshire Union Canal, Leeds & Liverpool Canal

We are delighted to be a partner with the acclaimed Film & Video Umbrella in Changing Places, a remarkable touring programme of moving-image work by artists from India, Pakistan and Bangladesh that will be presented in ten venues across England during 2017 and 2018. Five of the venues are unusual waterways buildings that the Trust manages or supports. Changing Places addresses the idea of people and places in transition, alluding to the topical phenomenon of migration. It reminds us that places and buildings too are on the move, regularly being transformed and reinvented. Locations will include:

  • The House Mill, Lea Navigation
  • Transhipment Warehouse, Peak Forest Canal
  • Roundhouse, Birmingham New Mainline
  • National Waterways Museum, Shropshire Union Canal
  • Building next to Leeds & Liverpool Canal (tbc)

For more information visit: Changing Places 

Idle Women on the water

On the water is a two-year tour of the canals in the North West of England and West Yorkshire, supported by Arts Council England’s Straetgic Touring fund and the Trust’s Arts on the Waterways Programme. Idle women aboard floating arts centre Selina CooperSelina Cooper, a bespoke narrowboat, serves as a resource and arts centre for women. In 2017 the project will host an artist-in-residence and present opportunities for women and girls to come aboard and join a creative process through residencies, events and talks.

For more information visit: Idle Women 

The Line                                           

The Trust is working with The Line on plans to add an iconic sculpture, The Hammer, by celebrated artist Michael Craig-Martin to the world-class sculpture walk alongside the River Lee in East London near Bow Locks. The Line already includes major works by Abigail Fallis, Thomas J Price and Damien Hirst sited next to this historic waterway. An engagement programme is being planned in partnership with local schools and family audiences.

For more information visit: The Line


Last date edited: 13 November 2017