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

Underfunding: Canal & River Trust's contract with Government

Funding of Canal & River Trust waterways

IWA was instrumental in Canal & River Trust receiving a sufficient funding package from Government when the new charity was set up in 2012 to run the waterways previously managed by British Waterways.

This 15-year contract comes to an end in 2027, and an announcement of future funding was due in July 2022, but Government failed to deliver on this promise. A year later, the Government announced a new, reduced funding settlement to the Canal & River Trust that may have devastating consequences. IWA issued a press release in response to the announcement.

The sum of money awarded represents a steep reduction in funding of more than £300 million in real terms over a ten-year period from 2027.  This will inevitably result in a decline in the overall condition of the network.  Worryingly, it may mean closing canals which threatens livelihoods, businesses, homes, heritage and irreplaceable natural habitats.

Economic valuation research carried out for Canal & River Trust estimates that waterways deliver an estimated social wellbeing value to those using just their waterways of £3.8bn per year.  Read about our Waterways for Today report.

IWA is determined to make the strongest possible representations. After more than 75 years of continuous campaigning and ongoing restoration, we will do everything possible to ensure your vital canals and rivers are preserved for current and future generations.

#ProtectOurWaterways – Find out more.




Read More

Read more about Waterways Underfunding

Hundreds of miles of waterways – along with their unique heritage and habitats – are currently starved of funding and rely on constant lobbying by us to safeguard their future.

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