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£16 million funding announced to restore Montgomery Canal


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This is a very important length that opens up the section through to Carreghofa along which are dropped bridges with the prospect of boats crossing heritage aqueducts again.

It will be of interest to see the timescale for this project. 

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It seems a helluvalot of money that could perhaps be better spent on the rest of the system, and who will maintain it?

 

Strikes me as more load onto CRT who can't cope with looking after what they've got now. 

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I don't really understand the logic, but I guess the restoration is not really about boating. 

 

From what I can see from Google maps, the section from Llanymynech to Arddleen does not join to the connect part, so all this will do is extend the resorted length of a disconnected part of the canal.  Presumably that is what was asked for, but why not extend from the connected part?

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46 minutes ago, john6767 said:

I don't really understand the logic, but I guess the restoration is not really about boating. 

 

From what I can see from Google maps, the section from Llanymynech to Arddleen does not join to the connect part, so all this will do is extend the resorted length of a disconnected part of the canal.  Presumably that is what was asked for, but why not extend from the connected part?

Presumably because this money was applied for and awarded to Powys/Wales, so can only be spent on the Welsh section. Hence my question in post #3 of this thread.

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3 minutes ago, David Mack said:

Presumably because this money was applied for and awarded to Powys/Wales, so can only be spent on the Welsh section. Hence my question in post #3 of this thread.

You are almost certainly correct. 

 

What does not make sense is the statement Made by the Montgomeryshire MP, which is what made me look on a map

 

"I am thrilled that Powys County Council’s Levelling Up Fund bid to restore and reconnect Montgomery Canal to the national network has been successful. This will transform Montgomeryshire’s economy in opening up so many opportunities, and will finally see one of the UK’s most picturesque attractions returned to its former glory."

 

Seems like a bit of a lie (shocking and from an MP too!) if those locations are correct. 

 

Does the unconnected bit get much use, and how is 4 miles more of it going to transform the county's economy?  At the end of the days this is the UK's (ie our) money, and it does not seem to be being spent well in this case.

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As I understand it, this grant is for the very expensive bit to restore.  The link from the Welsh border to the connected section is much simpler and cheaper to restore.

 

In theory this funding will accelerate the timescale for connecting the two sections so the local council are hoping for more tourism and more money being spent in their area.

 

We'll be going once it's open, but it's probably a couple of years away yet.

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This is a crucial part of the piecemeal restoration of the Montgomeryshire Canal, which historically starts at what was the end of the Ellesmere Canal Llanymynech Branch which united with the Eastern Montgomery Canal, and which started at Carreghofa . The Llanymynech branch was completed in 1795 as I explain in my Borders Canal book. That junction is also the location of the feeder, which although is not navigable is of interest to follow for the bridges across it. From Carreghofa the canal descends to its lowest point before climbing again to the isolated navigable section. This work will hopefully mark the completion of a navigation through to Welshpool and beyond passing some important heritage features and a very scenic location.

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I note that the Levelling up funding also includes a couple of other canal schems including 'Revitalising the Pontcysyllte Aqueduct and Canal World Heritage Site' Cant find much about this except for 'The plan, for the Trefor Basin and surrounding area, includes a visitor centre, glamping, and a “tree top walk”

 

Other schemes include towpath improvements in Kidderminster and a new bridge over the river Lea

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17 hours ago, Heartland said:

This is a crucial part of the piecemeal restoration of the Montgomeryshire Canal, which historically starts at what was the end of the Ellesmere Canal Llanymynech Branch which united with the Eastern Montgomery Canal, and which started at Carreghofa . The Llanymynech branch was completed in 1795 as I explain in my Borders Canal book. That junction is also the location of the feeder, which although is not navigable is of interest to follow for the bridges across it. From Carreghofa the canal descends to its lowest point before climbing again to the isolated navigable section. This work will hopefully mark the completion of a navigation through to Welshpool and beyond passing some important heritage features and a very scenic location.

 

Sorry, but getting beyond Berriew I doubt will ever be done. There are just too many road crossings involved. However it would be good to see boats back in Welshpool again.

 

Did you know that someone has dug out the arches and footings to the old lime kilns at Garthmyl?

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  • 2 weeks later...

There is a winding point at Reffail,one bridge short of the end of the Eastern Branch.  Because the main road and the canal are so close together,replacing the dropped bridge to give clearance for boats and an acceptalble approach for vehicles I understand the canal would have to be diverted. Do able but expensive.   At the navigable part conected to the system, work has begun to replace the dropped School House Bridge. As this is the last obstruction in Shropshire and the old railway enbanckment has been removed there will be no blockages before Llanymyenec.h,where a trip boat operates on a short section. However,I am not a civil engineer,but I can see a big problen next to the old  railway,where the lane below the towpath is much lower than the towpath. 93 Walls bridge still exists,but a causway has been put accross the canal to give access to houses. This prevents access to Carreghoffa Locks. Bridge 96 has been dropped by Powys Council. They gave an undertaking that if the canal was restored, they would restore the bridge to navigation. I hope they remember this pledge.  After this,the canal is good condition to Four Crosses and though to Arddlin. Two major blockages at Bridge 102 and 103. The canal is navigable through Welshpool to the Reffail.

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On 27/10/2021 at 20:19, john6767 said:

What does not make sense is the statement Made by the Montgomeryshire MP, which is what made me look on a map

 

"I am thrilled that Powys County Council’s Levelling Up Fund bid to restore and reconnect Montgomery Canal to the national network has been successful. This will transform Montgomeryshire’s economy in opening up so many opportunities, and will finally see one of the UK’s most picturesque attractions returned to its former glory."

 

I'm concerned. Surely Levelling Up will mean filling in the canal.

😀

 

I've yet to see a more coherent explanation of what levelling up is supposed to be.

 

Edited by Jen-in-Wellies
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Reading the announcements very carefully for what was not said, backed by a map and a pretty good understanding of the situation on the ground, the truth seems to be roughly as follows.

1. The section that will be restored with these funds will not, on it’s own, link up with anything over and above the short navigable length at Llanymynech.
 2. To the north, there is the Pant length of infilled dry canal stretching all the way to Schoolhouse bridge (ca 2 miles?) which will need digging out, banks securing, waterproofing etc.   No announcements yet on who is picking this bit up, which is in Shropshire.
3. To the South, there are the two main blockages at Arddeen.  This restoration seems to go UP to them, but does NOT include them. So we have Maerdy bridge (canal diversion, new lift bridge, tunnel under A 483) and it’s partner the south of Arddleen and the first blockage at the end of the long navigable isolated Welshpool length. This latter crossing is very hard to cope with, forcing engineers to contemplate the rather dodgy drop-lock concept (my scepticism here is based on experiences of the Forth & Clyde one).

So, before restoration of through navigation to Welshpool can said to be ‘fully in hand’ two more shoes have to drop.  A large to medium one on the 2 miles, and something VERY significant at Arddleen.  More announcements are needed!! 

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I agree with Tim. After the flurry of press articles, there seems to be a deathly silence on what this funding announcement actually represents. The CRT web page on the Mont hasn't been updated with the news, and merely reports a restoration plan and some work that started in 2017. The Shropshire Union Canal Society website restoration pages refer only to their own working parties. The Montgomery Waterway Restoration Trust doesn't seem to have a website, but the link on its Wikipedia entry takes you to a site which hasn't been updated since 2019. The website http://www.restorethemontgomerycanal.uk has as its latest news the results of a quiz in 2020.

Why aren't all these guys shouting the funding announcement from the rooftops and telling us when we can expect to see physical progress on the ground?

And presumably the funding award was as a result of a submission which would have set out the works covered, the technical solutions to key elements, the costs involved, the benefits which would result and an outline programme. Government doesn't fund projects without this sort of backup. So is the funding application in the public domain, or at least a summary document?

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48 minutes ago, Jen-in-Wellies said:

 

The submission was put in by and the awarded money is going to Tarquin and Rupert's Canal Restoration Company (Cayman Islands) ltd. Formed in 2021, with assets of 35p and a slightly furry boiled sweet found in a pocket. Tarquin and Rupert were at school with several current ministers and plan to level up their offshore bank accounts after missing out on the COVID contracts bonanza.

 

And the Canal Restoration Company (Cayman Islands) ltd has just announced plans to float on the AIM so Tarquin and Rupert can recover their 35p, and a bit more perhaps. 16m shares are to be issued at £1 each, coincidentally. 

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The Bristol Road roundabout work on the Stroudwater has recently been completed By Allan Griffiths, payed for by the Highways Agency. This involved two road bridges and major works to both carrage ways. The cost was,apparently 4 million. This may give an idea of the cost of the works needed at Ardd lin.  Bridge 103 and bridge102 Maerdy Bridge, Montgomery Canal,( lowered)

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