Over 1,500 tonnes of silt are to be dredged from the northern reaches of the Lancaster Canal in advance of the national three day Trailboat Festival to be held from Saturday 30 May until Monday 1 June, announced Canal and River Trust.
Dredging is a vital part of keeping the waterways clear for boaters, but also has a positive impact on the flora and fauna. The dredging of the northern reaches, the unrestored northern stretch of the Lancaster Canal, will also have the added benefit of improving the water supply to the remainder of the canal.
The work is being carried out to enable the Inland Waterways Association (IWA) Trailboat festival to take place alongside Countryfest – a celebration of food and the countryside on the Westmorland Show site at Crookland.
The dredging has been carefully planned to avoid what is believed to be a hospital barge used during the 1920 diphtheria epidemic and is now a submerged wreck at Field End Bridge. The Lancaster Canal Trust engaged divers who located the wreck and now the dredging has been planned to prevent it being disturbed.