account arrow-down arrow-left arrow-right closecontact-us emailFacebookheart instagramjoin linkedin phonepinterestplaysearch twitteryoutube

Ashby Canal Trail

Ashby Canal Trail

Snarestone, Leicestershire

£10,000 was awarded for the Ashby Canal Trail Project as part of IWA’s Waterways in Progress grants in 2019.

Work on the restoration of the northern reaches of the Ashby Canal had slowed and so members of the Ashby Canal Association felt that a Waterways in Progress-style project could serve to invigorate the volunteer team. In addition, it would bring a new lease of life to the overall restoration scheme. The village of Snarestone at the terminus of the canal is a short walk from Measham. However, there was little to link the two settlements.

Waterway users arriving at Snarestone along the canal often weren’t aware that Measham, with its shops and facilities, was close by. To get to the village, visitors had to walk along hedge-lined country lanes with poor visibility and narrow or non-existent verges.

The new Ashby Canal Trail provides a safe pathway link between Measham and the canal at Snarestone.

It provides leisure benefits for locals, by encouraging visitors and walkers to get out and about on a level, easy route.  The path also passes the Ashby Canal Association’s headquarters.  The increase in foot traffic should raise awareness of the restoration, and encourage new volunteers to join Ashby Canal Association to support further works in hand.

Measham suffered from the effects of the closure of local collieries. The restoration of the canal will help with the regeneration of the area in the longer term.

Heritage of the Ashby Canal

The trail also highlights the heritage of the area. The Ashby Canal towpath form the first ⅓ mile of the route. At Snarestone Wharf, visitors can view information panels showing the history of the Grade II listed building as well as the original pump beams preserved by Ashby Canal Association volunteers. Crossing Gilwiskaw Brook, a Special Area of Conservation, the length follows the original line of the canal to old Ilott Wharf (a major railway/canal interchange site for the old Measham colliery). It then follows the Transport & Works Act Order route to Measham, passing the old preserved Measham Midland Railway station, now Measham Museum.

[The photo shows moored boats at Snarestone Wharf, near the canal’s northern terminus for navigation  –  by Phil Sharpe]

Read More
Moored boats at Snarestone Wharf on the Ashby Canal
Moored boats at Snarestone Wharf on the Ashby Canal by Phil Sharpe

Sustainable boating

We are campaigning for boating on canals and rivers to be more sustainable.

Preserving heritage

Britain’s canals and rivers are a unique, living heritage. But that heritage is at risk.

Safeguarding waterways

Hundreds of miles of waterways are currently starved of funding.

Volunteers working on the restoration of the Stover Canal

Restoring waterways

Bringing Britain’s blue infrastructure back to life is good for people and places.

Campaign updates