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
We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.
Lots of work goes into keeping your canals enjoyable.
Behind the scenes, it’s a multi-team effort involving water managers, water engineers, MEICA SCADA engineers, maintenance teams, direct services construction and contractors, water controllers, ecologists, environmental scientists and volunteers to ensure that there is water in the canals and that they are safe and enjoyable for all.
You can see here how our fascinating MEICA SCADA team use technology to monitor the levels in the canals and count how many boats go through a lock, and much more. What does MEICA SCADA stand for?
Using the SCADA system we can see how the canal levels change over time as well.
The Water management team is made up of water experts who use this telemetry data, along with computer models, to try and ensure that we have just the right amount of water where we need it.
There are eight hydrologists, two modellers, one hydrometric assistant and eight water engineers. The team is currently building a computer model of the whole canal network, to determine the likely range of impacts on our canals from the future pressures such as climate change, increased boating and environmental legislation to name a few. See our Water Resources Strategy for more information.
The waterways operatives are out on site adjusting weir levels, opening and closing sluice gates to move the water where it needs to go. They are normally the first to spot problems and faults and many of the waterway staff have been working on the canals for years, and some even their whole lives. Their knowledge and experience is valued throughout the Trust and they work closely with many of the other teams.
We don’t just wait for someone to ring up and complain about a water level. It’s a constant task that requires proactivity and team work to help keep your canals topped up.
Our environmental scientists and ecologists are busy protecting the prized natural environment of our waterways. Because of their work, the next time you visit a canal or river, you’ll have the chance to spot a kingfisher or water vole, dragonfly or butterfly. Our canals, rivers and reservoirs are some of the most bio-diverse spaces in the country. 30% of them have been officially recognised for their special environmental value. Whether they’re creating new habitats, caring for wildlife while we’re fixing up our canals, improving water quality or providing education, they are involved with all that we do.
Click here to find out 6 things you didnt know about ecologists.
There's still so much more we do behind the scenes as we care for your canals. Why not get involved on the canal side or in one of our offices? We have more volunteers than staff at the Canal & River Trust and you could be one of them...
The water management team spend their days making sure that we have just the right amount of water in our canals. Here they share some of the highlights of their work with us.