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The charity making life better by water

About us and the planning system

The Canal & River Trust only owns 4% of the land next to our waterways. This means our waterways can be affected by the development activity of others.

The planning system plays a vital role in protecting the waterways from inappropriate development and enhancing the country's network of canals, rivers and docks. New developments provide great opportunities to create living waterways that transform places and can improve the wellbeing of communities that live alongside our network.

There are a range of organisations who make planning decisions about what should happen on land next to the waterways. The local planning authority (generally your local council) makes most decisions.

Our small team of professional planners get involved in the planning system, providing advice and comments to those who make the planning decisions. This can be on planning application proposals or when development plans are being prepared.

Those making the decisions on planning matters are interested in everyone's views. Although, if you want to get involved we know that the planning system can be complicated. So, in this section of our planning pages, you'll find basic information about:

Last Edited: 11 January 2023

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