CRT and Nat­u­ral Eng­land agree to work to­gether

Canal Boat - - News -

NAT­U­RAL ENG­LAND AND THE CANAL & RIVER TRUST have signed a Mem­o­ran­dum of Un­der­stand­ing, agree­ing to col­lab­o­rate to pro­tect the wa­ter­ways and make them more ac­ces­si­ble to the pub­lic.

The agree­ment fol­lows a few ex­am­ples where com­mu­ni­ca­tion be­tween the two bod­ies has been less than ideal, in­clud­ing the Mont­gomery restora­tion where a three-month wait for a newt li­cence to be pro­cessed was fol­lowed by a re­fusal; and the Ashby where a late in­ter­ven­tion by na­ture in­ter­ests al­most caused the can­cel­la­tion of the 2014 Shack­er­stone Fes­ti­val.

It was signed by Chief Ex­ec­u­tives Richard Parry (CRT) and James Cross ( NE) on the banks of the Pocklington Canal, a lo­ca­tion cho­sen in sup­port of the bid to the Her­itage Lottery Fund for £460,000 for work in­clud­ing both canal restora­tion and na­ture con­ser­va­tion.

Mr Cross said that “Ul­ti­mately we share many of the same goals as the Trust” and that NE would sim­plify its li­cens­ing sys­tem to make it eas­ier for CRT to carry out main­te­nance work, while Mr Parry agreed that the un­der­stand­ing would “make it quicker and eas­ier for us to im­prove our wa­ter­ways”. This would be done through NW grant­ing CRT an ‘or­gan­i­sa­tional li­cence’ which would recog­nise that CRT has the ex­per­tise to move pro­tected species such as voles, bats and na­tive cray­fish with­out ap­ply­ing for an in­di­vid­ual li­cence each time. CRT al­ready has such a li­cence for float­ing wa­ter plan­tain.

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