Costing £437,240, the project, which will be delivered in two parts, will see the towpath improved from Leathermill Lane to the A51 bridge on the Rugeley Bypass adjacent to the Ash Tree public house, a distance of 1 ¼ miles. The towpath will be widened in places to create a level pot hole and traffic free route that local people can use to commute to work and school, enjoy a leisurely stroll, go for a run or simply to enjoy the canal.
The first phase of the project will improve the towpath from Leathermill Lane to A51 Rugeley Bypass, a distance of ¼ mile. The work will also include improving the access at Leathermill Lane from the canal to Rugeley Town Centre as well as minor cycle and pedestrian improvements on footways along Power Station Road between the A51 and Love Lane.
Exploring Staffordshire's waterways
The next section will improve the towpath from the bridge at the A51 Rugeley bypass to Love Lane. The works are due to be completed by March 2020.
Adnan Saif, regional director at the Canal & River Trust, said: “It's fantastic news we've managed to secure funding to improve the towpath along this part of the Trent & Mersey Canal. Improving this stretch will mean visitors and local people can more easily explore Staffordshire's waterways without ever having to venture onto busy local roads.
“Research shows that being next to water can make you feel happier and heathier and once this towpath is finished I hope local people can enjoy being next to water all year round.”