Bondholder Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust has nearly reached its goal to secure £100,000 in pledges which will then open the door to further grants and funding.
Pledges have been flooding in from local people, businesses and canal enthusiasts and £85,000 has been earmarked towards the £352,000 restoration of a ‘Golden Mile’ of canal in Draycott into a major leisure attraction.
As soon as the pledge total has been reached, the Trust can call in matched funding so that work can start on the “Golden Mile” stretch of canal this summer on a 12-week construction programme.
Once completed, the ‘Golden Mile’ will be a valuable leisure and tourist facility including canoeing and fishing and with upgraded canal side routes for walkers, cyclists and horses.
The Draycott ‘Golden Mile’ will be the first stage in the Trust’s long-term plan to restore a 13 mile stretch of the former Derby Canal between the city, Swarkestone and Sandiacre.
This will connect to the Trent and Mersey and Erewash Canals - creating a 25 mile cruising ring with access to more than 2,000 miles of navigable waterways across the UK.
As well as restoring the canal, the ambitious programme includes creating an ‘arm’ lift to take boats down from the canal to the river level in Pride Park so that they can then travel up the Derwent to the Silk Mill in the city centre.
Chris Madge, chair of Derby and Sandiacre Canal Trust, explained: “We are very nearly over the pledge goal line. I would urge anyone who has not yet pledged their support to do so quickly so that we can start work on this exciting project as soon as possible and see people back enjoying the canal as a leisure and tourism attraction."
For more information and to pledge support for the Draycott Golden Mile, please visit www.derbycanal.org