Working all hours to reopen canal at Burnley

THE Canal & River Trust is working 12 hour days as part of a major project to repair the lining of the Leeds & Liverpool Canal at Finsley Gate, Burnley to re-open the canal as quickly as possible.

The Trust is repairing a section of the 200-year-old canal bed at Finsley Gate, between Manchester Road and Sandholme Aqueduct. The work, which started in January, has involved removing over 1200 tonnes of silt which was discovered at the bottom of the canal bed – almost double the amount than was first estimated.

With the silt removed and the water then drained full investigations showed that the existing towpath was unstable and needed to be rebuilt. The canal wall was also in a worse condition than expected and also required extensive repairs to make it safe.  Contractors are now completing the re-lining of the canal bed and repairing the canal wall.

The project is costing the charity over £1.7 million and the work is expected to be completed by 18 June 2019.

Daniel Greenhalgh, regional director at the Canal & River Trust, said: “This project has been really challenging for us to repair the 18th century canal bed and embankment.  The access to the site has been really restricted and once the canal was out of water, we have discovered lots of problems with the amount of silt at the bottom of the canal and the towpath and canal walls were in worse condition so we’ve needed to repair them.

“We know that being by water is good for your mental and physical health which is why we’re working around the clock to try and get the canal re-opened as quickly as possible. Once we’re finished local people can once again enjoy this beautiful canal for walking, cycling, boating, fishing, canoeing and paddle boarding.”