Waterway wanderers

Buy your Waterway Wanderers permit online or over the phone. It gives anglers miles of canal fishing in England and Wales.

Angling on the canals Angling on the canals
A boy fishing at Birmingham Canal Festival

Did you know?

Almost two thirds of households near our waterways are disadvantaged. Support our community projects along canals and rivers.

How to buy your Waterways Wanderers permit


You'll need to register with our new 'Boat licence and Waterway Wanderers permit account system'. Once registered, sign in and click the Waterways Wanderers option to buy your permit.

By phone

Call 0303 040 4040 and pay with your credit / debit card. Please have your Environment Agency rod licence handy - we'll need it to process your permit.

By post

Send a cheque made payable to Canal & River Trust to us at:  Waterway Wanderers, Canal & River Trust, Fearns Wharf, Neptune Street, Leeds, LS9 8PB.

Please include your full name, address and EA rod licence number. If applying for a concessionary permit, include a photocopy of proof of age or Angling Trust membership. Please allow 14 days for delivery by post.

Email fisheries@canalrivertrust.org.uk if you have any queries.

Why do you need a Waterways Wanderers permit?

There's no free fishing on any of our canals or rivers. (Unless you're visiting one our free Let's Fish! events of course!)

As the charity that cares for and brings to life 2,000 miles of canals and rivers across England and Wales, we own the fishing rights for these waterways. And it's with your support that we can make sure they're open for anglers to use and enjoy, every day.

On most stretches, local angling clubs rent the fishing rights from us, so you'll need to get your fishing permit from those clubs. See our fisheries list for the nearest club to you.

For non-rented stretches, you must have one of our Waterway Wanderers permits before you fish. We’re currently updating our interactive map showing details of all the routes, but in the meantime you can check our list of Waterway Wanderers stretches. Please email fisheries@canalrivertrust.org.uk if you have any questions.

How much does a Waterway Wanderers permit cost?

The Waterway Wanderers permit runs for 12 months from the day you buy it: 

  • adult: £22
  • concessions (includes concessionary rod licence holders, over 65s or Angling Trust members): £12
  • juniors (16 or under on the purchase date): £5 

To become an Angling Trust member and get a discounted permit call: 0343 5077 006 (Option 1). To get a rod licence call: 08448 005386.

Waterway Wanderers fishing rules

As with all things in life, there are a few rules we ask you to follow, please:

  • Only use a maximum of two rods per permit
  • Never remove native fish species from the fishery under any circumstances
  • Never return Zander and other non native species to our waterways (under the terms and conditions of our KIFR permits
  • No fishing in the close season on waters where the close season currently applies
  • You must follow the Angling Trust keepnet code
  • Carry your permit at all times and make it available to authorised bailiffs and Canal & River Trust staff when asked
  • You're strongly advised to hold insurance covering third party risk arising out of your angling activities (included within individual Angling Trust membership)
  • You must hold an Environment Agency rod licence
  • No fishing near or under overhead powerlines
  • Never fish within 25 metres of a lock, swing bridge or water point
  • No fishing between boats on permanent moorings or at visitor moorings where signed
  • Where visitor moorings are not signed as to whether fishing is permitted, it's is assumed, during the boating season, that mooring boats have priority, at other times access is on a first come first served basis
  • Please follow the towpath code as part of our Share the Space campaign and act responsibly at all times

Last date edited: 3 August 2020