21 October 2021

Britain’s canals and rivers are a unique, living heritage – they tell the story of our industrial past. Yet that heritage is at risk – from urban development, lack of protection, loss of skills and knowledge and climate change.

IWA has launched a campaign to raise awareness of the heritage that makes our waterways so unique, from the variety of smaller details and marks to the impressive feats of industrial engineering. And more than this – it’s the culture, crafts and skills – that make our inland waterways a living heritage.

Our Waterways: A living heritage

Hear from Giles, Matthew, Abbey, Charlotte and Simon about their passion for Britain’s unique industrial heritage. This new video highlights the importance of protecting the heritage features that can be found along the waterways as well as the skills and traditions that live on today.

Save waterways heritage

There are four easy ways that you can help to Save Waterways Heritage.

  1. You can help save waterways heritage by discovering hidden gems near you. Sign up to receive our ‘waterways heritage spotter guide’ – plus the latest heritage updates, and inspiration
  2. Explore your local waterway for examples of hidden heritage that you might not have spotted before and capture them
  3. Share your hidden heritage gems with us and post them to social media with #SaveWaterwaysHeritage
  4. Make a donation to our Save Waterways Heritage appeal

Perhaps you already have a good story to share about something local to you – or you might find something unusual that we can help identify. We will be sharing examples of these intriguing marks and details that tell their own special stories through our social media channels.

Find out more about waterways hidden heritage.