The charity making life better by water

Canal reopens to boats following £1.7 million repair to breach

We have reopened the Leeds & Liverpool Canal at Rishton in Lancashire following a six-month £1.7 million project to reinstate the canal for boaters, walkers, runners and the local community, following a breach of the historic waterway in October 2021.

Boat passing between other boats on a canal

What happened?

A small culvert dating back 200-years to when the canal was first built, and which carries a stream underneath the waterway, collapsed causing a section of the historic embankment to be washed away into the adjacent River Hyndburn.

More than 6,000 tonnes of stone have been needed to rebuild the canal embankment and reinstate the culvert. The repair has been particularly challenging as the site of the breach is away from local roads and required a temporary access track to be built along the bed of the drained canal so that materials could be bought to site.

Reopening in time for peak season

Dilwyn Parry, our senior project manager, said: “We've been working hard on site to repair the canal and get it back open as quickly as possible. I'm pleased that it is back open for boating time for the peak summer season. There are some repairs continuing to the towpath between Bridge 109 to Bridge 110 which will be completed by end of May.

The Leeds & Liverpool Canal is an extremely popular canal for the hundreds of boaters, walkers and cyclists that use it every day for their health and wellbeing. We would like to thank everyone for their patience and support whilst the work has been carried out.”

Last Edited: 19 April 2022

photo of a location on the canals
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