08:25 Thursday 26 December 2013

People urged to take canal walk after Christmas

Written byROB SMYTH

Staffordshire Diamond Jubliee boat, President, stops off at Fradley Junction on way to Queen's Jubilee procession on Thames.. Staffordshire Diamond Jubliee boat, President, stops off at Fradley Junction on way to Queen's Jubilee procession on Thames..

PEOPLE are being urged to blow away the Christmas cobwebs by discovering one of East Staffordshire’s hidden gems.

The Canal and River Trust is encouraging people to use their Christmas walks to explore the hidden gems that is just a few miles from home – Fradley Junction lock near Alrewas.

Bosses are urging nature lovers and heritage enthusiasts to strap on some sturdy boots and step onto the towpath to discover the waterway during the festive season.

Simon Salem, marketing director for the canal and river trust, said: “The canals are a wonderful place to visit and a brisk walk on a crisp winter’s morning is a great way to get some fresh air and blow away the cobwebs.

“Canals are really magical during winter and a day out exploring the secret delights of your local waterway is a great way to burn off some of that festive indulgence.”

“One of the places you could visit is Fradley Junction, where you can spot kingfishers at the nature reserve before a warming cup of tea, and perhaps a piece of cake, in the canal-side tea rooms.”

People are also being urged to become part of a ‘Towpath Taskforce’.

The team will provide regular practical volunteering opportunities and aim to bring significant benefits to waterside communities and the waterways themselves, most of which are between 200-250 years old, as well as preserving important wildlife habitats for the hundreds of different species which feed and nest on the waterways.

They undertake regular work on the towpath including painting lock gates, improving access to the towpath, clearing overgrown vegetation, cleaning up litter and graffiti.

More information is available by calling 03030 404040 or online at www.canalrivertrust.org.uk

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