Leeds-Liverpool Canal towpath upgrade work is set to start

Ilkley Gazette: Towpath subsidence on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal at Nelson Towpath subsidence on the Leeds and Liverpool Canal at Nelson

A major scheme to improve a stretch of the Leeds-Liverpool Canal towpath has been announced.

The Canal and River Trust, the charity that looks after the nation’s waterways, will upgrade the towpath between Gallows Footbridge in Shipley and Kirkstall New Road Bridge in Kirkstall, Leeds.

The £1.6 million scheme is part of a large-scale project led by Metro, Bradford Council and Leeds City Council, who have secured £18.1 million from the Department for Transport’s Cycle City Ambition Fund to create a safe, sustainable transport corridor for walkers and cyclists between Bradford and Leeds.

The towpath, which is a designated National Cycle Network Route, will be resurfaced to ensure it can be used on a year-round basis in most weathers and widened to a minimum of two metres where possible.

Additional work will include bank stabilisation, retention of grass verges either side of the towpath, installation of Disability Discrimination Act-compliant barriers and improved signage and waymarking. Now the Trust wants to hear people’s view on the project.

Stephen Higham, enterprise manager for the Canal and River Trust said: “The canal towpath is a facility for all of the public and is a multi-user route for walkers, cyclists and anglers.

“As part of the development of the project, we are seeking comments and suggestions to ensure that all of our user groups have the opportunity to be involved in the final design.”

Work is due to start early next year and should be finished by the end of next June – in time for the Tour de France starting in Yorkshire on July 5.

Details of the scheme will soon be available at http://canalrivertrust. org.uk/see-and-do/enterprise.

Work on the 127-mile long Leeds-Liverpool Canal started in 1770 and was completed in 1816. It has 91 locks.

Suggestions or comments can be sent to enquiries.northwest@canalriver trust.org.uk, or Canal and River Trust, Waterside House, Waterside Drive, Wigan, WN3 5AZ.

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