Read the story of how the Canal & River Trust came to be
Work for us
We have vacancies across all of our waterways and in the offices, museums and attractions that support them. We're one of the UK's biggest charities and we take pride in everything we do
If you're thinking of getting in touch then please take a moment to look through these pages as we probably have the answer on our website
Planning & design
All you need to know about planning and design on our canals and rivers
Find a winter mooring
Find a cosy section of canal to hunker down in this winter
10 reasons to take up canoeing
It's a great way to get fit and explore our waterways at the same time
Share the Space
Take a look at our common sense guide to sharing the towpath
Find a place to fish
From reservoirs to club-managed canals and river stretches - find your nearest place to fish
Get your free guide
Download your free guide today and start exploring the waterway nature near you
Download your free guides
You've nine free days out guides to choose from - where will you go first?
Find a walk near you
Are you ready to ramble? Find a waterside stroll or a satisfying hike along our beautiful canals and rivers
Take a look at our upcoming events here.
Find your favourite waterway
With over 95 canals, rivers, reservoirs, docks and navigations, find out more about your favourite waterway
Something for everyone
Help us make a difference and have fun along the way. Find your perfect volunteer role today
Join our team
Could you join your local Towpath Taskforce team and help us to keep our canals looking lovely?
Desmond Family Canoe Trail
If you're aged 16-25 and would like to get involved with this exciting project, please get in touch
Could you be a volunteer lock keeper?
Find out what's involved with this popular volunteering opportunity
We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.
One of the UK’s most secretive mammals, the water vole, has been captured on camera this week as part of our conservation work to improve the Kennet & Avon Canal in Wiltshire.
Most people associate the use of CCTV camera technology with catching speeding motorists and street surveillance. However, we’ve been using hidden cameras to help track the movements of the UK’s fastest declining mammal, the water vole.
Laura Plenty, Canal & River Trust ecologist, explains: “The water vole is such a special creature but it is threatened by a combination of habitat loss and predation by American mink. We’ve been working hard to create the right habitat for water voles to survive and reverse the decline in their population.
“We knew there were some colonies of water voles on the canal near Devizes, but during a maintenance visit to a different site on the Caen Hill Flight, we spotted a water vole ‘latrine’ which is basically a big pile of droppings, and decided it would be a fantastic place to test out our heat and motion sensitive camera to catch them in the act!”
The shy water vole needs a particular habitat to thrive. They like to live along canals and rivers where dense vegetation and steep banks offer both food and protection from predators. As a nationally protected species we have a duty to ensure our maintenance of the nation’s historic waterways protects fragile water vole colonies.
Laura continues: “The Canal & River Trust, with the help of many volunteers, spends a lot of time and money caring for the canal for the benefit of people and wildlife. Viewing the footage of the vole proves that this hard work has been worthwhile. The fact that there’s a new colony of voles living on the canal is the best reward we could ask for.”
This summer we spent eight weeks rebuilding a 500m stretch of the Kennet & Avon Canal towpath and soft bank near Pewsey, Wiltshire, using an innovative design which creates the perfect home for water voles. The work benefits a range of other wildlife too, like dragonflies, butterflies and nesting birds. It also helps stabilise the canal bank securing the towpath, making it better for boaters, walkers and cyclists.
Tamsin Phipps, chair of the Canal & River Trust’s Kennet & Avon Waterway Partnership said: “It costs around £138,000 to improve just one mile of canal bank and we’re appealing for people and organisations to help us ensure the canal remains a great place for wildlife now and in the future. Everyone benefits from this important work.”
We’re asking the public to support our ‘Give a vole a home’ appeal. Just £3 could provide four reed plants to be used by the team rebuilding the water vole friendly habitat. For more details about how to give and what your money will be used for visit www.canalrivertrust.org.uk/volehome
Emergency appeal launched following breach on the Middlewich branch of the Shropshire Union Canal
23 March 2018
Try canal boating at Drifters national open day
22 March 2018
Heritage transport plaque awarded to Froghall Basin on Caldon Canal
'Plasberg' eyesore removed from River Aire
Local people sought to help care for the Grantham Canal
20 March 2018
Canal & River Trust brand
19 March 2018
Bookings now open for 2018 Canal Pairs Championship
Breach of the Middlewich Branch, Shropshire Union Canal
16 March 2018