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Cycling and walking ‘rangers’ wanted for London’s canal towpaths

If you live in London and love walking and cycling we need you to volunteer and help make the capital’s increasingly busy canal towpaths even more pleasant places to visit.

We want to to recruit 30 new towpath rangers in the build up to the spring.Towpath rangers play an important role in encouraging walkers, cyclists, anglers, joggers and boaters, to use the towpaths considerately. They also attend and lead towpath events and guided walks, carry out visitor counts and encourage communities to get involved with their local waterways.

Rangers are needed at a range of locations along the Grand Union and Regent's canals. There are also opportunities on the Upper River Lee and River Stort.

Debbie Vidler, Canal & River Trust volunteer co-ordinator, says: “London's canals are proving more popular than ever and are becoming busier and busier as a result. It's a really rewarding role, perfect for someone who likes working outdoors, so I'd encourage anyone interested to get in touch.”

Always something going on

Rob Lansdown, has been volunteering as a towpath ranger for four years along the Regent's and Grand Union canals. Rob says: “I had serious back problems and needed to lose weight, so I went on the 'Waterways Diet'. I lost the 10 stone in a year by walking along the towpaths of London.

"Then I found out about volunteering as a Towpath Ranger and thought it sounded a great idea. Some of us cycle and some walk, sometimes together, sometimes on our own, and we look out for anything that's amiss so it can be fixed. It's a good role, there's always something going on or someone who needs some help – and it's great to be of service to them.”

You don't need any specialist knowledge to be a volunteer towpath ranger, just enthusiasm for your local waterway, an interest in cycling and walking and love talking to people. Familiarity with social media would also be an advantage. Events and activities may take place in the day time, evenings or at weekends and could last from a couple of hours to a full day. Ideally you should be able to give up to a couple of days a month.

Find out more about this rewarding volunteer role.

Last Edited: 17 February 2015

photo of a location on the canals
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