65 volunteers took part in a cleanup on Saturday 24th July 2021 to celebrate the Paddington Arm’s 220 year anniversary.
During the day, volunteers cleared the entire 12 mile Paddington Arm. They filled 9 workboats’ with rubbish hauled from the canal and picked from the towpath. This included approximately 5 large skips worth of rubbish, 1 skip of metal recycling and 1 skip of glass recycling. In addition, there were bags of cans, bottles and other recyclables. Items recovered from the water included an exercise bike, tyres, sheets of wood, a car roof rack, old chairs, old boat windows, a rusty old bike frame, a pair of hedge clippers, a stair gate and much more.
Volunteers contributed over 240 hours in total, which is the equivalent of over a month of staff time.
IWA helped to organise the event hosted by Friends of the Grand Union Canal and supported by Canal & River Trust. A grant from Kusuma Trust funded the kit used by volunteers.
Following the success of the event, discussions have started about having another event next year and a possible spin off event to clean up the Slough Arm.