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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
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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
Why we think canals are better with Friends
Become a Friend of the Canal & River Trust today and you’ll open yourself up to new experiences and endless opportunities.
We love and care for your canals and rivers, because everyone deserves a place to escape.
Cyclists are to get a major boost as work to upgrade the towpath along the Ashton Canal begins as part of Greater Manchester’s Cycle City programme.
The 8km towpath, which runs from Piccadilly Basin in Manchester city centre to Portland Basin in Ashton-under-Lyne, will be resurfaced with an all-weather path and widened as part of the project. Proposals also include improvements to access points to the canal for pedestrians and cyclists.
We're working in partnership with Transport for Greater Manchester (TfGM) to complete this project. We'll end up with a high quality shared space route for cyclists, walkers, joggers and anglers, which will link local communities and the city centre.
Julie Sharman, head of enterprise with the Canal & River Trust, welcomed the start of the work. She said: “As well as providing a safe off-road route we hope many more people will use this improved towpath for leisure giving local people a great opportunity to use our network to increase activity and to enjoy the canal side environment.
“Some of the route already has a good quality surface, near the Etihad City of Manchester Stadium and Piccadilly Village for example, but other areas will become much more accessible once an all-weather track is laid. At last it will be possible to cycle or walk the entire length of the Ashton Canal on a hard surface, providing new opportunities for commuters and city dwellers who want to re-connect to nature.”
Once completed later this year, Ashton Canal’s towpath will become one of the routes in the first phase of TfGM’s cycleway network, part of their DfT funded Cycle City programme.
The Cycle City programme is funded by a £20 million grant, awarded in 2013 as part of a national funding scheme to provide increased and improved cycling infrastructure to Greater Manchester.
There are currently a number of improvement works taking place across Greater Manchester that are part of the programme. In addition to Ashton Canal, areas like Salford, Stockport and Rusholme are amongst those that will benefit from Cycle City improvements, which will also include better cycling facilities at key transport interchanges and a partner school programme that educates students on the benefits of cycling.
Councillor Chris Paul, Member and Cycling Champion of the TfGM Committee, said: “By providing a high quality route as part of an extensive network, we want to link local communities together, and with the improvements along the Ashton Canal, people will find it easier than ever to travel to employment, education and leisure opportunities by bike."
The whole project along the canal towpath will take about 21 weeks to complete. While the improvements are carried out, short stretches of the towpath will need to be closed, which will result in diversions being put in operation.
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