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News article created on 4 July 2016

Wendover Arm restoration wins Heritage Lottery Fund support

A project to restore the Wendover Arm of the Grand Union Canal is a step closer after receiving initial support from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).

Boat moored in front of Little Tring Bridge on Wendover Arm of Grand Union Canal Little Tring, Bridge, Wendover Arm, Grand Union Canal, courtesy of rpmarks, Flickr

Working in partnership with the Wendover Arm Trust, we have been awarded an initial £74,600 development grant from the HLF to progress plans to restore a further stretch of the Wendover Arm.

The overall project, which could cost around £1.9million, will involve our contractors restoring a further mile and a quarter of the canal. It will also look at improving access, interpretation and the environment, together with ways of encouraging local people to get more involved.

Closed in 1904

Built in 1793 the Wendover Arm links the picturesque village of Wendover in Buckinghamshire with the Grand Union Canal at Tring in Hertfordshire. Originally built to supply water for the locks at Marsworth and Cowroast, the Arm leaked badly, with millions of litres of water lost every day. Despite repeated repairs, the Arm eventually closed to boating in 1904.

Since 1989, volunteers from the Wendover Arm Trust have been working to restore the Arm and have boats once again navigating this waterway. So far, 1½ miles of canal, from Bulbourne to Little Tring, have been restored to navigation by the volunteers.

Army of volunteers

James Clifton, from the Trust, said: “The Wendover Arm Trust and their army of volunteers have done a brilliant job restoring the first section, so that boats can now navigate it. This development money, together with contributions from ourselves and the Wendover Arm Trust, will allow us to carry out a detailed engineering study into what is needed for the restoration and what it will take to reopen the Arm.”