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Benefits of reopening Montgomery Canal on agenda at annual forum

10 Jun 2023 2 minute read
Montgomery Canal

Plans for the future and the benefits a revived canal can offer Powys and Shropshire will be discussed at the annual Montgomery Canal Forum later this month.

The forum, which is open to the public, will be hosted at the Aico Centre of Excellence, Maesbury Road, Oswestry on Wednesday, June 21, at 2.30pm.

Presentations will highlight recent events, which include a new section of canal opened to Crickheath, Montgomery Canal Triathlon, the ongoing reconstruction of Schoolhouse Bridge, last bridge blockage in Shropshire and initial works in Powys of a multi-million pound restoration programme supported by the UK Government Levelling-Up Fund.

Michael Limbrey, Montgomery Waterway Restoration Trust chairman, said: “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 which will benefit the local economy.”


He continued: “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.

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Mab Meirion
Mab Meirion
1 year ago

I hope the ‘development’ of Y Trallwng has not spoilt the wharf in any way, it’s 24 years since I explored the canal by canoe. God’s speed with its completion…

Peter Cuthbert
Peter Cuthbert
1 year ago
Reply to  Mab Meirion

Good to know that work is still progressing. The only worry is that we might find some JobsWorth notices rare plants growing in the canal. We could then end up with the problem faced by the Cromford Canal. It got decalared an SSI and the use of screw powered vessels was banned and the restoration attempts were severly hampered for a long time. I notice that from the Friends of Cromford Canal website it looks as if that issue has been overcome and restoration work has started again.

1 year ago

I hope when the canal restoration reaches Llanymynech and moves into Wales that money will become available from the Welsh Government to raise the bridges and complete the link to Trallwng and then onwards into Drenewydd. Canals are underrated – they can form important economic and wildlife corridors.

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