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Connecting canal to UK should be “properly funded”

 
Created on 19/07/2021 @ 10:07

 

A volunteer-led charity driving forward plans to connect Welshpool to the rest of Britain via the canal network are urging more local individuals and businesses to support as they bid to influence policy makers to “properly fund” the project.

Just a fortnight ago, it was revealed that a bid has been submitted to the UK Government for funds that will turbo charge the work to re-connect the Montgomery Canal with the rest of the UK.

Welsh Secretary of State, Simon Hart, gave his backing to the plans when meeting members of Friends of the Montgomery Canal, and the positivity has galvanised the enthusiasm for the volunteer-led project.

Christine Palin, Chairman of the Friends of the Montgomery Canal, said that it is one of the finest canals in the United Kingdom with a unique natural and built heritage.

Nature reserves beside the navigable canal protect its valuable plants and wildlife and, per mile, its collection of canal-age bridges, locks and other structures is unrivalled.

She said that with more support, the canal can be extended from Crickheath to join with the landlocked section at Llanymynech to create a sustainable tourism destination.

“Those of us who know the Montgomery Canal recognise its value not just to the wildlife and boaters but to the community as a whole,” said Mrs Palin.

“We are now asking more of those local people to join with us and tell policy makers that we think the canal should be properly funded so that its restoration can proceed apace.”

Volunteers are currently working near Crickheath to restore the channel in the canal which has been derelict for over 60 years.

Once this work is completed and tested, boats should be able to reach Crickheath from across the UK canal network, which will bring new visitors to the area. Plans are being made to rebuild the last canal's bridge blockage in Shropshire next year.

Mrs Palin added: “We already have several hundred active supporters of the Friends and with more members still we will be able to speak to politicians and decision makers with an even stronger voice.”

If you would like to support, visit the Friends of the Montgomery Canal at https://themontgomerycanal.org.uk.

 

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