The charity making life better by water

Peak Forest Canal basin opens following repairs

Together with the Inland Waterways Protection Society, we’ve carried out essential restoration work to the 18th century Bugsworth Basin on the Peak Forest Canal in Derbyshire. The work has been completed thanks to a £76,400 Heritage Lottery Fund grant.

The five-month project, which started in November, involved the basin first being drained and fish carefully caught and relocated. Volunteers and skilled craftsman from the Trust then dismantled the basin's wall.

A 150-metre length of wharf wall has been re-built using many of the same techniques used to build the basin 200 years ago. Volunteers and staff took part in special training days, which gave them the chance to learn historic skills including using traditional lime mortar.

Traditional skills

Judy Jones, heritage advisor at the Canal & River Trust, said: “The volunteers and staff have worked really hard to get the basin re-opened for Easter and the start of the main boating season. By teaching people the traditional skills that were used in its construction it is a great opportunity to show why conserving our heritage is so important.

Bugsworth Basin was once the largest and busiest inland port on Britain's narrow canal system, and the only one to survive intact. Today it is enjoyed by thousands of visitors and the important work which has been done here will conserve this piece of living history for many years to come."


Ian Edgar from the Inland Waterways Protection Society, added: “This wharf wall has had to be completely rebuilt due to its age and the effect on the historic structure caused by modern propeller driven boats. The quality and craftsmanship of the work undertaken by Canal & River Trust staff, usually in atrocious weather conditions is exemplary and fully in accordance with English Heritage and ecological requirements.

“This wall will last another 200 years like the rest of Bugsworth Basin. It has been a pleasure for the volunteers of The Inland Waterways Protection Society to work alongside the professionals. We have to thank everybody for this excellent outcome.”

Last Edited: 16 April 2014

photo of a location on the canals
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