New phase of Montgomery Canal dredging kicks off

Glandŵr Cymru, the Canal & River Trust in Wales, has started the second phase of dredging on the Montgomery Canal as part of the effort to restore the 200-year-old canal.

Canal & River Trust photo

The Montgomery Canal restoration has included decades of work by volunteers and partners. Now, over four miles of the canal between Llanymynech and Maerdy is being restored thanks to Glandŵr Cymru’s successful Levelling Up Fund bid in partnership with Powys County Council, supported by the Montgomery Canal Partnership.

This phase of the canal’s restoration is aiming to restore the channel so that boats will be able to use the waterway for the first time since the 1930s. It will also help make the canal easier to use for unpowered activities such as canoeing and paddleboarding.

Also, the restoration is creating a broad and sustainable habitat to support a range of wildlife and the protected floating water plantain that are found on the canal.

This latest phase of dredging is being split into two parts. The first, which will be completed in the new year, will see nearly a mile dredged from Bridge 99 to Vyrnwy Aqueduct.

The work will also open-up the canal by cutting back overgrown vegetation and ensuring that dangerous or diseased trees are pollarded or removed as appropriate.

The second part, just over half a mile from Bridge 101 to Bridge 102, will see the bank stabilised using coir roll and timber stakes, which will give the canal a soft bank ideal for wildlife such as water voles, wild fowl and invertebrates.

This phase will begin in January and is set to be complete by March 2024.