Wednesday 21 June 2023
New restoration projects – benefits of the reopened canal – plans for the future
This year’s Montgomery Canal Forum will be hosted at the Aico Centre of Excellence, Maesbury Road, Oswestry SY10 8NR, a short distance from the canal, on Wednesday, 21 June 2023, at 2.30 pm.
The Forum follows
- the opening of the new section of the canal to Crickheath on 2 June
- the Montgomery Canal Triathlon in May, which brought about 190 entrants from the local area and further afield
- the start in April of the reconstruction of Schoolhouse Bridge, the canal’s last bridge blockage in Shropshire, and
- the initial works in Powys of the multi-million-pound restoration programme under the UK Government Levelling-Up Fund.
Presentations will highlight these events, plans for the future and the benefits the revived canal can offer the area.
The Forum is a public meeting open to anyone interested in the Montgomery Canal.
Michael Limbrey, Chairman of the Montgomery Waterway Restoration Trust, said, “Today, the Montgomery Canal has a new destination in Shropshire, and little Crickheath becomes one of the furthest points you can travel on the canal network across England and Wales. Our ambition is to extend the canal through the final two miles in Shropshire and then through to Welshpool and beyond.
“Experience across the country shows that canals bring social, environmental and economic benefits to their area. These benefits are integral to the strategy for the Montgomery Canal. A safe space for recreation and well-being will provide opportunities for visitors and residents, benefiting the local economy. The substantial investment in canalside nature reserves near Queen’s Head will be matched in Powys to safeguard rare and protected wildlife. Maintenance will ensure water continues to flow and the canal is not blocked with aggressive plants. Rebuilt bridges on both sides of the border will make it easier for walkers and others at crossings which have blocked the canal for many years.
“In Shropshire, the volunteer work parties which rebuilt the canal channel to Crickheath – finishing on budget and on time – have started work on the next section. The support they received from the National Lottery Heritage Fund has now finished, and the Restore the Montgomery Canal! appeal is raising money to pay for materials and plant hire. Donations for the Schoolhouse Bridge project show how much people right across the country value what’s special about the Montgomery Canal, and we hope that that support will continue for the next stage.”
The Forum is organised by Montgomery Waterway Restoration Trust, formed in 1980 to bring together the public and voluntary organisations interested in the future of the Montgomery Canal.