Read the story of how the Canal & River Trust came to be
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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
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Take a look at our upcoming events here.
Find your favourite waterway
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Something for everyone
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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.
My name is Linda Butterworth. I am a project officer within the national environment team and I would like to tell you the story of our hedges.
The Trust owns over 600 miles of hedgerows and they form part of a vital green corridor along the 2,000 miles of our waterways. They are boundary markers, green heritage features and a safe haven for birds, butterflies and bees – all rolled up into a living landscape to be enjoyed by all of us.
Three years ago we started a hedgerow health check, supported by funds from players of People’s Postcode Lottery and conducted in part by many of our dedicated volunteers.
These hedgerows needed some help!
Gaps had formed, their general condition needed to be improved and the link between differing sections and other green spaces needed to be connected.
So a plan was formed and the appropriately named Helping Hedgerows Project started to pick up momentum.
Based on the survey, we went back to our local waterways, liaised with our local ecologists and volunteer leaders to agree on suitable hedgerows needing some care.
We asked our local communities for help in transforming our hedges back to healthy thriving green links vital for wildlife and people. And wow did our local communities respond!
These groups did a fantastic job – they ranged from junior rowers putting a bit back to the river they row on, to mental health groups seeking a distraction from their troubles, to adoption groups working hard on their favourite patch and corporate days providing a change in work practices and team building.
They benefitted, our hedgerows benefitted and for me personally I benefitted from meeting and working with a wide range of interesting people, who have a passion and commitment to making their local community a better place to be.
All thanks to support by funds from Players of People’s Postcode Lottery.
Well this work was only the start. Many miles of hedgerow still need our help.
The Helping Hedgerows Project is hopefully here to stay!
Read Dan's blog
Hear from one of our young volunteers who helped out with the hedgerows project.
Our guest bloggers all have a passion for our waterways, whether they are volunteers, staff or the experts we work with.