About the Northern Reaches
The Northern Reaches of the Lancaster Canal were severed from the main length of the canal by the building of the M6 motorway. The M6 crosses the canal three times. This section of 14.6 miles (23.4km) between Kendal and Tewitfield, including the eight locks, is coincidentally the part opened 18 years after the southern length.
Restoration of the abandoned part of the Lancaster Canal is currently concentrating on extending the navigable portion. This starts at Millness, the most northerly crossing of the M6 with a culvert for the canal, and runs for almost 2 miles to Stainton. The current northerly limit of navigation is the dam just before Stainton aqueduct; a listed structure which takes the canal over Stainton Beck. This will reopen soon taking the length to Stainton Crossing Bridge. Works to re-line the next 400m of channel are advanced and can be viewed from the towpath.
[Photo shows a canoeist at Stainton – by Nigel Hardacre]