chesterfield canal trust

Tapton Lock Festival set to bring the Chesterfield community together

The charity behind Chesterfield’s Tapton Lock Festival says it is set to return this year, offering free family fun for residents and visitors.

Taking place along the banks of the Chesterfield canal on the weekend of Saturday 11th and Sunday 12th September, the event celebrates the great outdoors and the incredible wildlife on our doorstep in North Derbyshire.

This year’s festival, organised by Junction Arts will feature activities and entertainment, including a climbing wall and canoeing, art workshops and live performances.

Attendees will also be able to take a trip aboard the Chesterfield Canal Trust’s trip boat, John Varley II.

This year, organisers are welcoming back the captivating bubbleologist, while on Sunday, the event will host children’s puppet shows and performances by Bee Guides Bombus and Borage and their amazing Bee Cart.

Hosted in partnership with the Derbyshire County Council Countryside Service, this festival is the first large event that Junction Arts has been able to run since March 2020. Having worked hard to continue their support to care homes, schools and families at a distance, the team is back running events and workshops face-to-face again, offering people the opportunity to be creative and empowering lives.

Hannah Bowdler, Relationship Fundraiser for Junction Arts said: “This year, Junction Arts is on a mission to bring our communities back together safely, through its calendar of exciting events. They see how involvement in creative and social activities and interaction within our communities alleviates loneliness, anxiety and stress, and you are invited to benefit from this too!”

Festival organisers are asking local people to become a sponsor of the Tapton Lock Festival, by donating what they can to help bring our communities back together safely. For more information, visit: www.virginmoneygiving.com/fund/TaptonLockFestival2021

Junction Arts supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Posted in About Chesterfield, Featured, Home, Leisure, Love Chesterfield, Summer, Uncategorised, VisitingTagged in , , , , , , , ,

Dozens help with Chesterfield Canal clean ups

Fifteen volunteers helped to tidy-up one of Chesterfield’s best outdoor spaces last month, with Chesterfield Litter Picking Group and Chesterfield Canal Trust working together to get rid of litter and debris along the canal.

The team got together for the effort on Saturday 24th April, including several canoeists and paddleboarders, who did a superb job clearing the towpath and the canal above Tapton Lock in Chesterfield in the morning. They even removed debris that had got stuck on tree branches in floods.

They saw lots of newly hatched ducklings and even a newt that was found under an old mattress along the bank.

The volunteers also intend to make contact with the companies backing onto the water to encourage them to refrain from dumping their rubbish onto the banks.

In the afternoon, a second group totalling 35 people of all ages, tackled the currently unrestored section of the canal in Renishaw. They cleared a huge amount of rubbish, mostly drinks bottles and cans, but also a tyre, a roadsign, a fire extinguisher and a garden seat. A large elm tree that had collapsed into the canal was cut up and cleared.

This group also cleared vegetation along half a mile of towpath stretching from Main Road Bridge right back to Hague Lane. This is usually impassable in the summer because it gets smothered in brambles, but it is more pleasant for walkers than the adjacent the Trans-Pennine Trail.

This clear-up will be repeated on the last Saturday afternoon of every month. The Chesterfield Canal Trust is keen to set up a group of local volunteers in Renishaw who will eventually manage their section of the canal and look after the adjacent woodland and fishing pond.

In the autumn, the Trust is set to start a major project at Renishaw, making good a previous restoration attempt and extending it to a total of 1,000 metres. This will eventually link up to the Doe Lea Valley restoration section for which the Trust has recently received planning permission.

When all these works are finished, probably sometime in 2024, it will extend the restored canal in Derbyshire from 5 miles to 7½ miles. The highlight will be a 37 metre long aqueduct, nearly 10 metres above the River Doe Lea.

Besides providing a wonderful towpath for walkers, cyclists and mobility scooter users, it will give new fishing grounds. Opportunities for the hire of boats, canoes, paddleboards and cycles will be created. There will be a need for refreshments and it will attract people to the area, thereby benefitting local businesses.

Kath Auton, the Trust’s Membership Secretary, said: “Today has been wonderful. We have met so many local people who are keen to help get the canal restored and back in water. It will be a real asset to Renishaw. I can’t wait for the next clear-up on May 29th.”

Chesterfield Canal Trust supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

Posted in Featured, Home, Leisure, Uncategorised, VisitingTagged in , , , ,

Plans to restore further stretch of Chesterfield Canal approved

Plans to restore the Chesterfield Canal by 1.6 miles have been approved. This will extend the navigable section in Derbyshire by a third from Staveley almost to Renishaw. It will include a 37m long aqueduct almost 10m above the River Doe Lea.

There remains lots of preparation to be done, but there should be works on the ground by the end of this year or early in 2022.

The restored canal currently ends at Eckington Road Bridge in Staveley, where the Chesterfield Canal Trust’s volunteer Work Party has built a new lock and restored a further 300m of canal. The new section will go through a disused railway line and across the Doe Lea Valley on the Staveley Puddlebank. This is a huge embankment nearly 800m long and up to 10m high that was a wonder of the age when constructed in 1776. The canal then turns north and runs parallel to the Doe Lea to the borough boundary.

The towpath will be a 3m wide all-user trail alongside the canal, so walkers, cyclists and mobility scooter users will be able to join boaters, canoeists and paddleboarders in enjoying the new route.

The application was submitted by the Chesterfield Canal Trust through its Development Manager, George Rogers. Although endorsed by lots of members of the public and numerous organisations including the Ramblers, Chesterfield Cycle Campaign and Chesterfield Civic Society, HS2 Ltd. objected. The canal runs underneath HS2’s proposed line to a maintenance depot. However, negotiations with HS2 earlier in the year led to the objection being withdrawn, leaving the way clear for council approval.

Chair of the Chesterfield Canal Trust, Peter Hardy, said: “We are delighted that our planning application has been approved. This is a substantial step on the path to achieving our ambition of reopening the canal fully by 2027. We would like to put on record our thanks to our many supporters and partners who have backed us so far and who we know will stick by us in the exciting years ahead.”

The Trust is hoping to start its Rewatering Renishaw project in the coming months, which will bring a further 1,000m of canal back to life. This will mean that there could be a total of 7½ miles of canal from Chesterfield to Renishaw by the end of 2023.

Once this has been achieved, lots of opportunities for tourism will open up including the hire of dayboats, weekend boats, canoes, paddleboards and cycles. There will be a need for more pubs and cafés, and anglers will be delighted by new opportunities.

At the same time, Staveley Town Basin, now renamed Staveley Waterside, will be developed by Derbyshire County Council and there are plans for a whole new village on the old Staveley Works site, including a hotel and small marina.

Rod Auton, Publicity Officer for the Trust, said: “The next few years will see an incredible transformation along the canal which will bring a massive economic boost to the area. It is our hope that the Chesterfield Waterside development will also continue, including opening the canal basin. This would connect the town directly into the beautiful, green and tranquil oasis that is the Chesterfield Canal.”

Chesterfield Canal Trust supports the marketing and economic growth of the town through Chesterfield Champions, a network of over 180 organisations across Chesterfield and North Derbyshire.

 

Posted in Destination Chesterfield, Development, Featured, Home, Leisure, VisitingTagged in , , , , ,

Funding given to restore stretch of Chesterfield Canal at Renishaw

£50,000 has been awarded to a project aimed at restoring and extending a derelict canal channel in Renishaw. The ‘Rewatering Renishaw’ scheme will transform the stretch into a permanent water space that local people can enjoy.

Approximately 500m of the Chesterfield Canal channel was restored through Renishaw, Derbyshire in 2010, as part of a housing development. However, due to various issues, the stretch proved to be unuseable. It delivered little benefit to the newly created community on the housing estate and the wider Renishaw community.

This project is part of Phase 1 of the Chesterfield Canal Trust’s ambition to restore the canal to full navigation by 2027. This will be the 250th anniversary of the canal’s original opening. The complete Phase 1 works will extend the current limit of navigation from the town of Staveley to the village of Renishaw. They will also include the construction of three new accommodation bridges, four new bridleway bridges, a lock, a railway overbridge, an aqueduct and approximately 5km of new or restored channel.

The entire Phase 1 of the project will take several years to complete. It will require over £4m to be raised. The works at Renishaw (Phase 1a) can be completed much earlier and provide lasting benefits to the community. These will be felt long before either the Phase 1 works are completed, or it forms part of a fully restored waterway. This lasting and standalone benefit from an interim restoration stage is a prime example of the Waterways in Progress philosophy.

The grant, with additional funding from Chesterfield Canal Trust and Derbyshire County Council, will allow the trust to undertake the following Phase 1a work:

  • 550m of canal channel re-profiled to navigable standards.
  • 1,050m of canal channel relined using a geosynthetic clay liner.
  • 250m of stone gabions installed in the canal banks and waterproofed by casting a concrete face up to the water level.
  • Clinker Wood side weir restored and a temporary pumping system provided to supply water from the River Rother to the canal.
  • 550m of towpath resurfaced, making it suitable for pedestrians and cyclists. The current path is virtually impassable despite being the official public right of way.
  • A further 915m of towpath resurfaced to provide a circular 2.5km surfaced route incorporating the Trans-Pennine Trail.
  • Eight picnic benches, made from recycled plastic. These will be installed across two locations along with three standard benches in other areas of the scheme. Two of the picnic benches will be suitable for wheelchair users.
  • Installation of signage to encourage users of the Trans-Pennine Trail to explore the canal and the village. Plus the provision of 12 cycle stands to allow cyclists to secure their bikes.
    Additional Works
  • Alongside the above works, the project partners plan to deliver the following additional works to futureproof the canal for navigation:
  • 210m of concrete and masonry wash walling constructed around Black’s Pit corner, in order to protect the banks around this tight turn.
  • 285m of steel piling installed to the south of Barlborough Road Bridge, to provide future visitor moorings.

Trust Secretary Rod Auton said: “This is great news for the Trust and even better news for the residents of Renishaw. The canal looked great when first restored in 2009, but has since become an eyesore. We will now be able to restore and extend it on both sides of Barlborough Road and keep it looking wonderful with a regular water supply. It is even possible that it could be connected to Chesterfield within a couple of years, if the necessary funding can be secured.”

Posted in Celebrate Chesterfield, Destination Chesterfield, Development, Home, Leisure, VisitingTagged in , , , , , , , ,

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