You made it happen on our canals and rivers

On 19 November we’re joining with other charities to say a big thank you to our supporters. Find out how your volunteer time and your donations have helped us to make life better by water.

Volunteering in Birmingham Volunteering in Birmingham

#YouMadeItHappen for millions of people in England and Wales this year. Thanks to your donations and your volunteering, we’ve been able to transform canals and rivers into spaces where local people choose to spend time and feel better.

#YouMadeItHappen by volunteering

Our fantastic volunteers help us every day in hundreds of different ways. Their support is vital to our work.

Our 2017/18 Annual Report noted that we have around 225 community adoptions, with local people looking after their stretch of canal.

Find out more about volunteering in partnership with the Trust

Our inspirational volunteer lock keepers speak to around 17,000 people on the towpath on a weekly basis over the summer. They offer assistance to boaters, welcome visitors and help to make sure everyone is safe and happy.

Here are just some of the projects our amazing volunteers have helped us to deliver this year.

#YouMadeItHappen with your donations

Our 2017/18 Annual Report noted a 15% growth in Friends to 24,000 with donations up to £6.1m, including from players of the People’s Postcode Lottery. Thank you!

Take a look at just some of the projects that your donations have helped to make happen.

Middlewich Breach

In March 2018 a breach at Middlewich on the Shropshire Union Canal left a giant 12 metre deep hole in the canal bank.

Middlewich breach from the air

Your donations have helped us to start repairing the breach, which is estimated to cost around £3million.

Andy Johnson, senior project manager comments, "I'd like to thank everyone for their support and kind donations. This has really demonstrated the love that people have for the canal, which plays an important part in people's everyday lives."


The Ring is a major new arts programme celebrating the waterways making up the Mid-Worcestershire Ring.

Executive producer of our Arts on the Waterways programme Tim Eastop comments,

"Water and nature have long been a catalyst for the arts. The waterways are tranquil, beautiful places to escape the hectic pace of 21st Century life."

Tim Eastop

The RING ran from March to September 2018, and your donations helped to make it happen.

Marple Aqueduct

Marple Locks and Aqueduct are brimming with industrial heritage and make a great place for a family day out. Your donations are helping us to repair and protect this important heritage, ensuring local people can enjoy it well into the future.

Heritage advisor Judy Jones comments:

“This stretch of canal was recently awarded a coveted Heritage Green Flag Award and the works by the Trust, with the invaluable support of our Friends will ensure that it continues to be a great place for people to visit.”

We'd like to say a massive thank you to all of our Friends and volunteers, wherever you are and whatever you have helped us to achieve. We couldn't do it without you!

Last date edited: 16 November 2018