The Canal & River Trust has awarded its national dredging contract to carry out essential dredging works on its 200-year-old waterway network in England and Wales to Land & Water Services Ltd following a competitive tender process.
Dredging is vital to keep the waterways open for navigation, as well as ensuring the canals are safe, combating unruly vegetation and improving wildlife habitats, the Trust said.
In 2015/16 the Trust spent over £7 million on dredging the 2,000 miles of waterways in its care.
Simon Bamford, asset delivery director at Canal & River Trust, said: “This contract is the result of 18 months of hard work, care and attention as we’ve reviewed how we manage our overall dredging program and looked at how we can improve things. We’re delighted with the way in which Land & Water Services has understood the challenges we face and the need for making things more efficient.
“The contract will play a major part in what the Trust is trying to achieve: putting our customers at the heart of what we do and making sure that our waterways remain special places alive with people, boats and wildlife.”
This is one of the Trust’s largest single contracts and will replace the current mainline and hydrodynamic dredging contracts currently held by Land & Water, the official announcement said.
The contract will be for a period of 10 years and will start on 1 July 2017 when the existing contracts expire and the intervening period will be used to plan works for next year.