Stoke canals more welcoming thanks to wayfinding signs

STOKE-on-Trent’s canals will be more accessible for walkers and cyclists from this spring, thanks to the installation of new Wayfinding signs.

Coun Daniel Jellyman (Stoke-on-Trent City Council) and Simon Papprill (Canal & River Trust) with a new Wayfinding sign on the Caldon Canal next to Etruria Industrial Museum. PHOTOS: CRT

The Canal & River Trust has teamed up with Stoke-on-Trent City Council in a joint project to attract more people down to the city’s hidden canal gems.

More than a dozen finger posts and detailed information boards have been installed at key junctions and locations along the Trent & Mersey and Caldon canals throughout the city centre.

Their installation is part of a wider investment by Stoke-on-Trent City Council into its Legible Stoke-on-Trent initiative. The aim of scheme is to enable more local residents and visitors to walk and cycle around the city, improving health and wellbeing, encouraging support for local businesses and reducing air pollution.

Over 70 signs in total are being installed across the city from Stoke Town to Hanley city centre, the Trent & Mersey Canal from the Bet 365 stadium to Westport Lake, and the Caldon Canal from Etruria to Emma Bridgewater Pottery.

Based on the world-renowned Legible London scheme, developed by Transport for London, the bright modern signboards feature maps, nearby attractions and landmarks, aimed at helping visitors   and local residents to rediscover new ways of moving around the city

Coun Daniel Jellyman, cabinet member for regeneration, transport and heritage at Stoke-on-Trent City Council, said: “We’re delighted to be working with the Canal & River Trust as part of the wider wayfinding project across the city. Our canal network is a hugely important part of Stoke-on-Trent’s heritage, and we want people to be able to experience all that it has to offer.

“This investment will help to increase visitor numbers and make it easier for people to access our canals, as well as key sites in Stoke-on-Trent that link to our waterways. As part of the wider project, these signs are being installed at specific locations in Stoke-on-Trent, which will improve accessibility, boost tourism, and help to promote our city’s fantastic facilities, heritage and culture.”

Simon Papprill, local enterprise manager with the Canal & River Trust, added: “This is a fantastic initiative which should make people feel safer and more comfortable exploring unfamiliar territory.

“Stoke’s canals are a wonderful attraction, right on the doorstep of so many residents. The waterways provide attractive off-road routes for walking and cycling, connecting shops and housing estates, town centres, parks and community hubs.

“Sometimes the access may not be clear or people may not realise how these delightful blue routes connect into the streetscape. This brilliant new signage will help people explore unfamiliar routes and broaden their horizons.”

For more information about walks and attractions on the Trent & Mersey Canal, Caldon Canal and other waterways, visit the Canal & River Trust website