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Bright future for Midlands' waterways

People living in the Midlands are being invited to find out more about exciting plans for the future of the region’s historic waterways.

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The Midlands’ wonderful waterways are unrecognisable from what they once were
Charlotte Atkins

A meeting will enable people to meet representatives of the Canal & River Trust's Central Shires Waterway Partnership and discuss their ten year plan for the region's canals and rivers.

The Partnership is a group of leading local figures, formed when the Trust was created in July 2012, to work together for the benefit of the people and businesses that use and enjoy the region's canal network. At the meeting they will reflect on what has been achieved over the last year and explain the ways in which communities, local authorities, schools, and local businesses can shape and get involved in their exciting plans for the year ahead.

The Partnership's ten year plan for the waterways outlines how, 200 years after they were built, the region's waterways can contribute to all areas of day-to-day life by attracting jobs and tourism, promoting healthy lifestyles, improving accessibility and increasing education opportunities.

Their vision for the future of the region's waterways includes:

  • Getting local communities more actively involved in helping to maintain their local canal or river through youth projects and adoption schemes.
  • Working with councils, local businesses, boaters and other users to maximise the contribution that canals and rivers can make to local economies and tourism at key locations.
  • Promoting the canals as a free gym that can benefit people's health, by improving towpath routes and links between key destinations.

The public meeting will take place at The Waterfront at Barton Turns Marina near Burton on Tuesday 30th September from 6.30pm.

The Trust aims to build upon the public passion for the nation's canals which rescued them from dereliction and decline in the last century, through increased fundraising, volunteering and community involvement.

Charlotte Atkins chair of the Central Shires waterway partnership said; “The Midlands' wonderful waterways are unrecognisable from what they once were. Today they are healthy, thriving green spaces that provide our towns, cities and countryside with green lungs, jobs and spaces to get away from it all.

“But we've only just scratched the surface of what they can be. Local people, businesses and councils now have a chance to play a meaningful role in the way their waterways are managed and improved for the future. I'm really looking forward to welcoming local people to our annual meeting, and hopefully inspiring them to get involved in our work to really make the most of these fantastic assets.”

Find more information on the Canal & River Trust and the work of the Central Shires Waterway Partnership

Last Edited: 10 September 2015

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