Boat trips return to Standedge Tunnel

Standedge Tunnel and Visitor Centre has restarted boat trips into Britain’s longest, highest and deepest canal tunnel.

The 200-year-old attraction, which is managed by waterways and wellbeing charity Canal & River Trust, is welcoming back visitors following the easing of coronavirus restrictions.

Standedge TunnelThe museum gallery, Watersedge Café and outdoor areas are all fully open, and this summer canoe trips at the site are being offered for the first time.

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Vicky Levine, area operations manager for Canal & River Trust, said: “We’re delighted to be able to run boats into the tunnel again. Although we’ve had a lot of visitors to the site over recent months, it’s great people can experience in the tunnel itself once more.”

The Discovery boat trips into the tunnel last around 30 minutes and as it is operating in a confined environment, Covid safety precautions are in place. These include mandatory face coverings for all guests, a minimum age of six and a maximum of ten people on the boat at any time, with socially distanced seating provided.

Trips can be booked through Eventbrite or contacting the Visitor Centre direct. Unfortunately, through-trips, taking visitors all the way through the tunnel, are currently unavailable.

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The new canoe sessions have been designed specifically for novices, with all equipment and instructors provided. The sessions last 90 minutes and take in the Huddersfield Narrow Canal from Standedge to Lock 42. Bookings are still available for August 24th and 31st, with more sessions planned in the coming weeks.

For more details, please email the Visitor Centre at standedge@canalrivertrust.org.uk

New this year at the Visitor Centre is a sensory garden, mini-amphitheatre and picnic area. However, the indoor soft play has now been removed, with the equipment donated to a playgroup in Slaithwaite.

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Watersedge Café is also under new management, and is run by local couple Bryan and Lorna Conway.

Vicky added: “We want to ensure our guests have an enjoyable and safe experience at this historic attraction, so please follow all of the Covid safe precautions we have put in place.”
Canal & River Trust is also seeking more volunteers at Standedge, including help with driving the boats, general maintenance, gardening and grounds work, tours, talks and general administration.

For more information on Standedge, including volunteering, contact Standedge direct on 01484 844298, or email standedge@canalrivertrust.org.uk

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