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News article created on 19 May 2016

Help us crowdsource ideas for the Kennet & Avon Canal

People who live and work around the Kennet & Avon Canal are being invited to an open meeting to brainstorm ideas on how to improve the historic waterway.

The drop-in session will be an opportunity for the many individuals and groups who use the canal to find out more about how it’s run, and get involved in planning for its future.

With more recorded yearly visits to the waterway than ever before, the Kennet & Avon Canal is popular with boaters, walkers, cyclists, anglers and canoeists, and is a traffic-free route between Reading and Bristol.  Completed in 1810, the waterway provides a link to the area’s industrial past, as well as a space for people to relax and enjoy nature.

A special canal

Mark Evans, waterway manager at the Canal & River Trust, said: “The Kennet & Avon Canal is a waterway that’s close to many people’s hearts for countless different reasons. We’re honoured to be looking after it, and we think part of that is finding out what makes the canal so special, and constantly looking at ways we can preserve and improve it. We don’t have all the answers, so we’re looking to use this meeting to crowdsource different opinions and ideas, so please do drop in on Tuesday evening if you’re interested in where we go from here.”

Tamsin Phipps, chair of the Kennet & Avon Waterway Partnership, said: “It’s always great to meet the range of people using the canal, and this meeting is a fantastic opportunity for everyone who’s invested in the waterway – including boaters, walkers, canoeists, cyclists, or anyone else – to get together and share ideas. Whether you’ve had a lightbulb moment on how we can improve a particular stretch or some thoughts about what you’d like to see more of on the canal, now’s the time to speak up. Equally, if you’ve got any concerns, it’s the perfect time to meet the team running the canal and make sure they’re shared.”

The drop-in session will be held on Tuesday 24th May at the Corn Exchange, Devizes, SN10 1HS, between 6.30pm and 8.30pm.