08:40 Monday 06 January 2014

Canal locks to get £20,000 makeover

Written byHELEN KREFT

TWO canal locks near Burton will be given a £20,000 facelift as part of £300,000 investment into the restoration of waterways.

As part of its annual programme of restoration and repairs to historic waterways across the country, the Canal & River Trust is undertaking essential maintenance works on Staffordshire’s canal network this winter.

The trust will spend £11,000 to refit lock gates and repairing brickwork at Branston Lock, and a further £13,000 will be spent on repairing lock gates and historic brickwork at Bagnall Lock, in Alrewas.

Work on Bagnall Lock will run from January 20 to February 14, and then repair work will move straight to Branston and will be completed by March 8.

Both locks will be temporarily closed to the public while repair work takes place.

This winter the trust is spending a total of £45 million to look after 2,000 miles of canals and rivers across England and Wales.

Darren Green, Canal & River Trust waterways manager, said: “Staffordshire’s waterways are some of the most scenic and popular in the country but people may not realise that there’s quite a lot of work needed to look after them. Our teams are out in all weathers and over the next few months our engineers and heritage experts will be braving the cold to give the canals the care and attention they deserve.

“It’s painstaking, specialised work but the canals are an important part of the region’s heritage so it’s right that we devote some time and craftsmanship to help protect them for future generations.”

Richard Parry, chief executive of the Canal & River Trust, said: “By showcasing this work to the public we can give them a glimpse of the craftsmanship of the waterways’ original 18th Century design and the scale of the work we do to care for it.

“We hope this will inspire more people to get involved to enjoy and help support their local canal or river navigation.”

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