Volunteers set to Restore Locks on Grantham Canal After Heritage Lottery Fund Investment
18 December 2014
Canal & River Trust has announced that a volunteer-led project to restore a series of historic canal locks on the Grantham Canal has received a £830,500 grant from the Heritage Lottery Fund (HLF).
The five-year project will be managed by CRT and Grantham Canal Society (GCS). The restoration work is to be carried out by volunteers from GCS with support from IWA’s Waterway Recovery Group and Grantham College.
The project’s aim is to bring locks 14 and 15, near Woolsthorpe, back into working order for the first time in around 80 years and to lay the groundwork for the restoration of a further two locks (numbered 12 and 13). As part of this, a tailored training programme will be available, offering volunteers the chance to gain important heritage skills and restoration knowledge, which they can use on other sections of the Canal.
In addition to the physical works, the project will also aim to raise awareness of the Canal’s built and natural heritage and encourage more people to explore it through festivals, walking trails, archaeological activities, on-site information and online resources.
The works will be a major milestone in the on-going efforts to restore the Canal whilst also helping to care for its important ecology by improving conditions for aquatic species to thrive.
The two locks were designed by renowned engineer William Jessop and many components and design features are largely intact from their original construction over 200 years ago. Sadly, since the Canal was closed to boats in 1929, the locks have become overgrown and have collapsed in some places. Now volunteers will be helping to reverse the decline by rebuilding collapsed lock walls, clearing out earth and debris from the lock chambers, installing new wooden gates and refilling with water.