Macclesfield Canal, Between Bridges 26 & 27


From Date: 20/05/2016 08:00

To Date: 10/06/2016 15:00 inclusive

Type: Navigation Closure

Reason: Structure failure

Is the towpath closed? Yes


Closest waterway: Macclesfield Canal

Starts at: Bridge 27, Kerridge Road Bridge

Ends at: Bridge 26, Sugar Lane Bridge

Upstream winding hole: Between bridges 25 and 26.

Downstream winding hole: Bollington Wharf


10/06/2016 16:06

We have been refilling the canal slowly under the supervision of our engineers and we are pleased to confirm that the canal will be open to navigation and the towpath will be open for pedestrians from 1500 this afternoon. Our staff will be on site to giving a verbal update to boaters without web access.

We will remain on site over the weekend and into next week, when we will be carrying out grouting repairs behind the offside washwall at Clarence Mill.

Many thanks for your patience and good will. Please join us in thanking our contractors for carrying out the repairs so quickly and safely under challenging conditions. We are also grateful to our neighbours in Bollington for their continued help and cooperation.

08/06/2016 17:11

Despite a big push by the contractors on site, equipment breakdowns and deteriorating weather, we're still working to clear the huge amount of silt which we removed from the damaged bed area. With only one way in and out for construction materials and waste, and limits on the size of equipment we can safely use next to washwalls, the process has been slower than we wanted.

We'll be on site with excavators, pumps and dumpers all day tomorrow (Thursday) and are confident that we will have removed the silt and carried out the minor repairs to bed and washwall by the evening. We will then start the process of refilling the canal over Thursday night and Friday, and will have the canal open to navigation on early Saturday.

This is later than we first thought which will be disappointing we know, once again we're grateful for your support and will let you know we're on track on Friday morning.

06/06/2016 16:57

Our contractors have worked through the weekend and the good news is that the repairs to the damaged bed near to Clarence Mill have been completed.  While this is great news there is still over 100Te of silt to clear from the bed, and some minor bed and washwall repairs which we will complete while still on site.

Our plan for the rest of this week looks like this.  We will be working to remove silt and carry out minor repairs on Tuesday. We aim to start refilling  carefully over Wednesday and Thursday, keeping a close eye on the repaired areas and the locations of previous leaks into adjoining land. Once we're happy that the repairs are holding well, we'll remove the pumps and the temporary fabric dam protecting the working area. This is planned for Friday 10 June. As per our previous update, the canal will be open for Saturday.

Thanks again for your patience and your continued interest. Should there be any opportunity to bring the opening date forward we will let you know. In any case we'll provide a further update on Wednesday 8 June to let you how things are going.

03/06/2016 15:29

Progress has been good since the last update thanks to our contractors’ efforts and making the most of good weather.  Works on site continue to generate a huge amount of interest from customers and neighbours and we try to keep our message on site positive, realistic and consistent with the updates we are trying to share with you as frequently as possible.

So far we’ve cleared approximately 100te of silt from the damaged section of the canal and excavated up to a metre of the existing puddle clay in preparation for new clay. We are now in the second day of placing puddle clay and will be working over the weekend to help us finish these bed repairs early next week. All of this has been done under close supervision by our in-house engineers.

There is still lots to do before we can finally remove fences and stop planks, and open the canal and towpath for business as usual. There are other more minor repairs to complete, stilling tests required to confirm the repairs are good, and we still need to remove the temporary road in the bed of the canal and the ramp over the towpath, along with fabric dams and pumps before the canal can be opened. Nevertheless we are confident that the canal will be open to navigation for the weekend 11/12 June. Our contractors will be working this weekend (4/5 June) and we will update this notice giving more clarity about timescales by Monday evening.

We appreciate this has been disruptive to our customers and our site team are grateful for your patience.

31/05/2016 14:34

Our contractors have worked through the weekend to construct a road into the bottom of the canal so that we can get excavators and other equipment into the canal bed.  There is a lot of silt here which is very soft and a special road has had to be built using “bog mats” which has taken some time.  This allowed us to inspect the obvious problem areas on Sunday and start repairs on Monday.

During this we have found other parts of the canal bed that will need repairs too.  Over the next week or so we expect to continue a process of investigation and repairs, extending the road in the canal bed as we go along.

This is a slow process with difficult access in a relatively confined location.  The track to the site is very narrow with limited space at the end – we’re only able to use a dumper to bring material into the site from the road.  We can see it is very unlikely that the work will be finished this week and that we will need to work through next weekend and into the week of 6th June to finish the repairs.  We expect to provide a further update on Friday morning.

24/05/2016 16:15

Investigation/ inspection work on site today has revealed that the problems in Bollington are more complex than was first anticipated or is evident from the indications on the surface of the canal channel.  Unfortunately it’s going to take longer to determine the repair needed and the repairs will be more extensive than first thought.  It’s certain that the canal will not be open in time for the weekend and may be closed now for a couple of weeks.  In the meantime we are constructing the various accesses we need to into the canal with the expectation of being able to start the repair works in the next day or so.

We expect to be able to give a better update at the beginning of next week.

We know that it will be frustrating for people to have the canal closed for a period, especially at this time of year.  We’re sorry for the inconvenience this will be causing but are sure that people will understand the need for us to be able to carry out this work safely and thoroughly.  We are dealing with this as quickly as we can.

Towpath closures will come into effect tomorrow.

If you want to know more please contact our office at Red Bull on 0303 040 4040.

23/05/2016 12:52

Over the weekend we were able to start the fish rescue needed before we can finish draining the canal.  So far around a 1000lb of fish have been removed, it’s likely to be tomorrow before this can be finished and draining of the canal completed.

The physical inspection of the canal will take place tomorrow and it is expected that repairs will start on Wednesday.  We have a lot of silt to remove before we can be certain of the full extent of the problem and then how long it is likely to take to repair.

The towpath will be closed from Wednesday between bridges 26 and 27.  This is necessary so that we can operate with mechanical plant on the towpath.  For people trying to pass through Bollington there is access to the Middlewood Way from bridge 25 and we will advise people to leave the towpath at bridges 25 and 28 (Grimshaw Lane).

We’ll provide a further update when we have more certainty about the likely timeframe for repairs.  While we are trying to see the canal reopened in time for the bank holiday weekend, we are not certain that this will be achievable.

Customers will also be aware of the canal closure in Marple affecting the area.  Repairs are underway at Lock 12 and we are expecting the Marple flight to reopen tomorrow, Tuesday 24th at the latest.


We have been monitoring a leak at Clarence Mill, Bollington and as a precaution have taken the decision to close the canal for further investigation.  The canal is closed between bridges 26 and 27, either side of Parmerston Embankment.   We will be investigating the issue with the aim of undertaking repairs, we anticipate that the canal will be closed over the weekend and into the early part of next week.  When we have a better idea of the length of the closure we will update this notice.

Mooring is generally available either side of the closure on the towpath.