£10m Cotswold Lot­tery grant clears first hur­dle; Lon­don Boat Show gets the chop; Daven­try arm doubts; Scot­tish Low­land canals in cri­sis?

Canal Boat - - CONTENTS -

Boats from the na­tional net­work look set to re­turn to a ten mile stretch of the Cotswold Canals, thanks to the pro­vi­sion ap­proval of a £10m bid to the Her­itage Lot­tery Fund by Stroud Dis­trict Coun­cil and the Cotswold Canals Trust.

The fund­ing would form the largest sin­gle part of a £23m pack­age to re­in­state the ‘Phase 1b’ sec­tion of the Stroud­wa­ter Nav­i­ga­tion from Saul Junc­tion on the Glouces­ter & Sharp­ness Canal to Stone­house, where it links up with the six-mile ‘Phase 1a’ sec­tion (on which restora­tion is al­ready al­most com­plete), open­ing up nav­i­ga­tion through to Stroud and up the val­ley be­yond.

The money isn’t in the bag yet: this is only the first stage of the ap­proval process, but it does come with an im­me­di­ate £842,000 of de­vel­op­ment fund­ing, and it means that the full £10m has been ear­marked for the project. Fi­nal ap­proval will de­pend on de­tailed plan­ning and the con­fir­ma­tion of an­other £8m of ‘match fund­ing’ from other sources (on top of £5m al­ready se­cured) – and a pro­fes­sional fundraiser will be em­ployed with this aim – but ba­si­cally “It’s ours to lose”, as a CCT source put it. And all be­ing well, it could be open as soon as 2024.

Dock Lock, East­ing­ton: boats in six years?

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