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.
I’m a volunteer at the National Waterways Museum in Ellesmere Port. I joined five years ago. When we came to the museum, the idea was that I was coming to look to volunteer – but they started talking to my wife, she’s a reference librarian, and they said: "Really! We’ve just brought the archives up from Gloucester!"
When I started, there wasn’t a lot of regime to the work, so a colleague and I decided to sit down and actually map out a complete maintenance programme for the site, which is still being used today. For site maintenance we have a team of about ten volunteers, and we just break into small groups – we’ll be painting, we’ll be repairing doors, it’s just general site work, and some of it will be getting new exhibitions ready. There’s a whole host of different skills needed. We’re constantly looking at improving the museum and making it more interesting for visitors.
A couple of years ago, I was asked to be lead volunteer. It’s been a really exciting time. I then became Volunteer Project Manager for the recent Arts Council Resilience Fund project which has meant lifting the boats, moving them into a store, and recommissioning the dry dock in the museum. And now we’ll start the conservation process. We’ve always threatened to get the boats out of the water and we’ve never done it. And a lot of people thought we would never do it, but that’s one word I don’t believe in! And we did it.
What keeps me coming back is I can see how we’re making progress and improving the museum. And we’re learning as we go along, it’s a continual learning curve, which is great!
Barry, Ellesmere Port, Shropshire Union Canal/Manchester Ship Canal
Visit the National Waterways Museum
Have a grand day out at the National Waterways Museum, Ellesmere Port
Volunteer for us
Join our fantastic team of volunteers and help us bring waterways to life in your area